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GNU Emacs Manual

GNU Emacs Manual


Seventeenth Edition, Updated for Emacs Version 24.2.

Richard Stallman et al.

This is the Seventeenth edition of the GNU Emacs Manual, updated for Emacs version 24.2. Copyright c 1985-1987, 1993-2012 Free Software Foundation, Inc. Permission is granted to copy, distribute and/or modify this document under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License, Version 1.3 or any later version published by the Free Software Foundation; with the Invariant Sections being The GNU Manifesto, Distribution and GNU GENERAL PUBLIC LICENSE, with the Front-Cover texts being A GNU Manual, and with the Back-Cover Texts as in (a) below. A copy of the license is included in the section entitled GNU Free Documentation License. (a) The FSFs Back-Cover Text is: You have the freedom to copy and modify this GNU manual. Buying copies from the FSF supports it in developing GNU and promoting software freedom.

Published by the Free Software Foundation 51 Franklin Street, Fifth Floor Boston, MA 02110-1301 USA ISBN 978-0-9831592-4-7

Cover art by Etienne Suvasa; cover design by Matt Lee.

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Short Contents
Preface . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1 Distribution . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2 Introduction . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5 1 The Organization of the Screen . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6 2 Characters, Keys and Commands . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 11 3 Entering and Exiting Emacs . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 14 4 Basic Editing Commands . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 17 5 The Minibuer . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 27 6 Running Commands by Name . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 37 7 Help . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 38 8 The Mark and the Region . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 47 9 Killing and Moving Text . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 54 10 Registers . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 66 11 Controlling the Display . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 70 12 Searching and Replacement . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 91 13 Commands for Fixing Typos . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 110 14 Keyboard Macros . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 116 15 File Handling . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 124 16 Using Multiple Buers . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 150 17 Multiple Windows . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 159 18 Frames and Graphical Displays . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 165 19 International Character Set Support . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 180 20 Major and Minor Modes . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 204 21 Indentation . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 210 22 Commands for Human Languages . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 214 23 Editing Programs . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 249 24 Compiling and Testing Programs . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 271 25 Maintaining Large Programs . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 292 26 Abbrevs . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 322 27 Dired, the Directory Editor . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 329 28 The Calendar and the Diary . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 346

ii 29 Sending Mail . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 30 Reading Mail with Rmail . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 31 Miscellaneous Commands . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 32 Emacs Lisp Packages . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 33 Customization . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 34 Dealing with Common Problems . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . A GNU GENERAL PUBLIC LICENSE . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . B GNU Free Documentation License . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . C Command Line Arguments for Emacs Invocation . . . . . . . . . . . . D X Options and Resources . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . E Emacs 23 Antinews . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . F Emacs and Mac OS / GNUstep . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . G Emacs and Microsoft Windows/MS-DOS . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . The GNU Manifesto . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Glossary . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Key (Character) Index . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Command and Function Index . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Variable Index . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Concept Index . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 367 376 397 430 434 468 484 496 505 521 529 531 535 546 555 580 590 604 612

iii

Table of Contents
Preface . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1 Distribution . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2
Acknowledgments . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2

Introduction . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5 1 The Organization of the Screen . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6


1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 Point . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6 The Echo Area . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 7 The Mode Line . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 8 The Menu Bar . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10

Characters, Keys and Commands . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 11


2.1 2.2 2.3 Kinds of User Input . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 11 Keys . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 11 Keys and Commands . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12

Entering and Exiting Emacs . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 14


3.1 3.2 Entering Emacs . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 14 Exiting Emacs . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 15

Basic Editing Commands . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 17


4.1 4.2 4.3 4.4 4.5 4.6 4.7 4.8 4.9 4.10 4.11 Inserting Text . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Changing the Location of Point . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Erasing Text . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Undoing Changes . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Files . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Help . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Blank Lines . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Continuation Lines . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Cursor Position Information . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Numeric Arguments . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Repeating a Command . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 17 18 20 21 22 22 22 23 23 25 26

iv

The Minibuer . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 27
5.1 5.2 5.3 Minibuers for File Names . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Editing in the Minibuer . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Completion . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5.3.1 Completion Example . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5.3.2 Completion Commands . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5.3.3 Completion Exit . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5.3.4 How Completion Alternatives Are Chosen . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5.3.5 Completion Options . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5.4 Minibuer History . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5.5 Repeating Minibuer Commands . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5.6 Entering passwords . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 27 28 29 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36

6 7

Running Commands by Name . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 37 Help . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 38


7.1 7.2 7.3 7.4 7.5 7.6 7.7 7.8 7.9 Documentation for a Key . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Help by Command or Variable Name . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Apropos . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Help Mode Commands . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Keyword Search for Packages . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Help for International Language Support . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Other Help Commands . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Help Files . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Help on Active Text and Tooltips . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 40 40 41 43 43 44 44 45 46

The Mark and the Region . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 47


8.1 8.2 8.3 8.4 8.5 8.6 8.7 Setting the Mark . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Commands to Mark Textual Objects . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Operating on the Region . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . The Mark Ring . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . The Global Mark Ring . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Shift Selection . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Disabling Transient Mark Mode . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 47 49 50 51 51 52 52

Killing and Moving Text . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 54


9.1 Deletion and Killing . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 9.1.1 Deletion . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 9.1.2 Killing by Lines . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 9.1.3 Other Kill Commands . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 9.1.4 Options for Killing . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 9.2 Yanking . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 9.2.1 The Kill Ring . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 9.2.2 Yanking Earlier Kills . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 9.2.3 Appending Kills . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 9.3 Cut and Paste Operations on Graphical Displays . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 9.3.1 Using the Clipboard . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 9.3.2 Cut and Paste with Other Window Applications . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 9.3.3 Secondary Selection . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 9.4 Accumulating Text . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 9.5 Rectangles . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 9.6 CUA Bindings . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 54 54 55 56 56 57 57 58 58 59 59 60 61 61 63 64

10

Registers . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 66
10.1 10.2 10.3 10.4 10.5 10.6 10.7 Saving Positions in Registers . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Saving Text in Registers . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Saving Rectangles in Registers . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Saving Window Congurations in Registers . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Keeping Numbers in Registers . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Keeping File Names in Registers . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Bookmarks . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 66 66 67 67 68 68 68

11

Controlling the Display . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 70


11.1 11.2 11.3 11.4 11.5 11.6 11.7 11.8 11.9 11.10 11.11 11.12 11.13 11.14 11.15 11.16 11.17 Scrolling . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Recentering . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Automatic Scrolling . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Horizontal Scrolling . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Narrowing . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . View Mode . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Follow Mode . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Text Faces . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Colors for Faces . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Standard Faces . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Text Scale . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Font Lock mode . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Interactive Highlighting . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Window Fringes . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Displaying Boundaries . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Useless Whitespace . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Selective Display . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 70 71 72 73 74 75 75 75 76 77 79 80 81 83 83 84 85

vi 11.18 11.19 11.20 11.21 11.22 11.23 Optional Mode Line Features . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . How Text Is Displayed . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Displaying the Cursor . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Line Truncation . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Visual Line Mode . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Customization of Display . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 85 87 88 89 89 90

12

Searching and Replacement . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 91


12.1 Incremental Search . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 91 12.1.1 Basics of Incremental Search . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 91 12.1.2 Repeating Incremental Search . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 92 12.1.3 Errors in Incremental Search . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 93 12.1.4 Special Input for Incremental Search . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 93 12.1.5 Isearch Yanking . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 94 12.1.6 Scrolling During Incremental Search . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 94 12.1.7 Searching the Minibuer . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 95 12.2 Nonincremental Search . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 95 12.3 Word Search . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 95 12.4 Regular Expression Search . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 96 12.5 Syntax of Regular Expressions . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 97 12.6 Backslash in Regular Expressions . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 100 12.7 Regular Expression Example . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 103 12.8 Searching and Case . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 103 12.9 Replacement Commands . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 103 12.9.1 Unconditional Replacement . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 104 12.9.2 Regexp Replacement . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 104 12.9.3 Replace Commands and Case . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 105 12.9.4 Query Replace . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 106 12.10 Other Search-and-Loop Commands . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 107

13

Commands for Fixing Typos . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 110


13.1 13.2 13.3 13.4 Undo . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Transposing Text . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Case Conversion . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Checking and Correcting Spelling . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 110 111 112 112

14

Keyboard Macros . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 116


14.1 14.2 14.3 14.4 14.5 14.6 14.7 Basic Use . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . The Keyboard Macro Ring . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . The Keyboard Macro Counter . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Executing Macros with Variations . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Naming and Saving Keyboard Macros . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Editing a Keyboard Macro . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Stepwise Editing a Keyboard Macro . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 116 118 118 120 121 122 122

vii

15

File Handling . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 124


15.1 File Names . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 15.2 Visiting Files . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 15.3 Saving Files . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 15.3.1 Commands for Saving Files . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 15.3.2 Backup Files . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 15.3.2.1 Single or Numbered Backups . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 15.3.2.2 Automatic Deletion of Backups . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 15.3.2.3 Copying vs. Renaming . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 15.3.3 Customizing Saving of Files . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 15.3.4 Protection against Simultaneous Editing . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 15.3.5 Shadowing Files . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 15.3.6 Updating Time Stamps Automatically . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 15.4 Reverting a Buer . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 15.5 Auto-Saving: Protection Against Disasters . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 15.5.1 Auto-Save Files . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 15.5.2 Controlling Auto-Saving . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 15.5.3 Recovering Data from Auto-Saves . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 15.6 File Name Aliases . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 15.7 File Directories . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 15.8 Comparing Files . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 15.9 Di Mode . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 15.10 Miscellaneous File Operations . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 15.11 Accessing Compressed Files . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 15.12 File Archives . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 15.13 Remote Files . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 15.14 Quoted File Names . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 15.15 File Name Cache . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 15.16 Convenience Features for Finding Files . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 15.17 Filesets . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 124 125 128 128 130 130 131 132 132 133 134 135 135 136 136 137 137 138 139 140 141 143 144 144 145 146 147 148 148

16

Using Multiple Buers . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 150


16.1 Creating and Selecting Buers . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 16.2 Listing Existing Buers . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 16.3 Miscellaneous Buer Operations . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 16.4 Killing Buers . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 16.5 Operating on Several Buers . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 16.6 Indirect Buers . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 16.7 Convenience Features and Customization of Buer Handling . . . . . . . 16.7.1 Making Buer Names Unique . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 16.7.2 Switching Between Buers using Substrings . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 16.7.3 Customizing Buer Menus . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 150 152 152 153 154 156 157 157 158 158

viii

17

Multiple Windows . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 159


17.1 Concepts of Emacs Windows . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 17.2 Splitting Windows . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 17.3 Using Other Windows . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 17.4 Displaying in Another Window . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 17.5 Deleting and Rearranging Windows . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 17.6 Displaying a Buer in a Window . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 17.6.1 How display-buffer works . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 17.7 Convenience Features for Window Handling . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 159 159 160 161 162 163 163 164

18

Frames and Graphical Displays . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 165


18.1 18.2 18.3 18.4 18.5 18.6 18.7 18.8 18.9 18.10 18.11 18.12 18.13 18.14 18.15 18.16 18.17 18.18 18.19 18.20 Mouse Commands for Editing . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Mouse Commands for Words and Lines . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Following References with the Mouse . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Mouse Clicks for Menus . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Mode Line Mouse Commands . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Creating Frames . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Frame Commands . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Fonts . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Speedbar Frames . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Multiple Displays . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Frame Parameters . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Scroll Bars . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Drag and Drop . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Menu Bars . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Tool Bars . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Using Dialog Boxes . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Tooltips . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Mouse Avoidance . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Non-Window Terminals . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Using a Mouse in Text Terminals . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 165 167 167 168 169 169 170 171 174 175 175 176 176 176 177 177 178 178 179 179

19

International Character Set Support . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 180


19.1 19.2 19.3 19.4 19.5 19.6 19.7 19.8 19.9 19.10 19.11 19.12 Introduction to International Character Sets . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Disabling Multibyte Characters . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Language Environments . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Input Methods . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Selecting an Input Method . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Coding Systems . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Recognizing Coding Systems . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Specifying a Files Coding System . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Choosing Coding Systems for Output . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Specifying a Coding System for File Text . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Coding Systems for Interprocess Communication . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Coding Systems for File Names . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 180 182 183 185 186 188 190 192 192 193 194 195

ix 19.13 19.14 19.15 19.16 19.17 19.18 19.19 19.20 Coding Systems for Terminal I/O . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Fontsets . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Dening fontsets . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Modifying Fontsets . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Undisplayable Characters . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Unibyte Editing Mode . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Charsets . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Bidirectional Editing . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 196 197 198 199 200 200 202 202

20

Major and Minor Modes . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 204


20.1 20.2 20.3 Major Modes . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 204 Minor Modes . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 205 Choosing File Modes . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 207

21

Indentation . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 210
21.1 21.2 21.3 21.4 Indentation Commands . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Tab Stops . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Tabs vs. Spaces . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Convenience Features for Indentation . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 210 211 212 212

22

Commands for Human Languages . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 214


22.1 Words . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 22.2 Sentences . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 22.3 Paragraphs . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 22.4 Pages . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 22.5 Filling Text . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 22.5.1 Auto Fill Mode . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 22.5.2 Explicit Fill Commands . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 22.5.3 The Fill Prex . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 22.5.4 Adaptive Filling . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 22.6 Case Conversion Commands . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 22.7 Text Mode . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 22.8 Outline Mode . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 22.8.1 Format of Outlines . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 22.8.2 Outline Motion Commands . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 22.8.3 Outline Visibility Commands . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 22.8.4 Viewing One Outline in Multiple Views . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 22.8.5 Folding Editing . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 22.9 Org Mode . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 22.9.1 Org as an organizer . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 22.9.2 Org as an authoring system . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 22.10 TEX Mode . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 22.10.1 TEX Editing Commands . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 22.10.2 LaTEX Editing Commands . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 22.10.3 TEX Printing Commands . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 214 215 216 217 218 218 219 220 222 223 223 224 225 226 226 228 228 229 230 230 231 232 233 233

x 22.10.4 TEX Mode Miscellany . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 22.11 SGML and HTML Modes . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 22.12 Nro Mode . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 22.13 Enriched Text . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 22.13.1 Enriched Mode . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 22.13.2 Hard and Soft Newlines . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 22.13.3 Editing Format Information . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 22.13.4 Faces in Enriched Text . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 22.13.5 Indentation in Enriched Text . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 22.13.6 Justication in Enriched Text . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 22.13.7 Setting Other Text Properties . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 22.14 Editing Text-based Tables . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 22.14.1 What is a Text-based Table? . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 22.14.2 Creating a Table . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 22.14.3 Table Recognition . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 22.14.4 Commands for Table Cells . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 22.14.5 Cell Justication . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 22.14.6 Table Rows and Columns . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 22.14.7 Converting Between Plain Text and Tables . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 22.14.8 Table Miscellany . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 22.15 Two-Column Editing . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 235 236 237 237 238 238 239 239 240 241 241 241 242 243 243 244 244 245 245 246 247

23

Editing Programs . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 249


23.1 Major Modes for Programming Languages . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 23.2 Top-Level Denitions, or Defuns . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 23.2.1 Left Margin Convention . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 23.2.2 Moving by Defuns . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 23.2.3 Imenu . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 23.2.4 Which Function Mode . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 23.3 Indentation for Programs . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 23.3.1 Basic Program Indentation Commands . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 23.3.2 Indenting Several Lines . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 23.3.3 Customizing Lisp Indentation . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 23.3.4 Commands for C Indentation . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 23.3.5 Customizing C Indentation . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 23.4 Commands for Editing with Parentheses . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 23.4.1 Expressions with Balanced Parentheses . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 23.4.2 Moving in the Parenthesis Structure . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 23.4.3 Matching Parentheses . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 23.5 Manipulating Comments . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 23.5.1 Comment Commands . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 23.5.2 Multiple Lines of Comments . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 23.5.3 Options Controlling Comments . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 23.6 Documentation Lookup . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 23.6.1 Info Documentation Lookup . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 23.6.2 Man Page Lookup . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 249 250 250 251 251 252 252 252 253 254 254 255 256 256 257 258 258 259 260 261 261 262 262

xi 23.6.3 Emacs Lisp Documentation Lookup . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 23.7 Hideshow minor mode . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 23.8 Completion for Symbol Names . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 23.9 Glasses minor mode . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 23.10 Semantic . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 23.11 Other Features Useful for Editing Programs . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 23.12 C and Related Modes . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 23.12.1 C Mode Motion Commands . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 23.12.2 Electric C Characters . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 23.12.3 Hungry Delete Feature in C . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 23.12.4 Other Commands for C Mode . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 23.13 Asm Mode . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 263 263 264 264 265 265 266 266 267 267 268 270

24

Compiling and Testing Programs . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 271


24.1 Running Compilations under Emacs . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 24.2 Compilation Mode . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 24.3 Subshells for Compilation . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 24.4 Searching with Grep under Emacs . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 24.5 Finding Syntax Errors On The Fly . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 24.6 Running Debuggers Under Emacs . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 24.6.1 Starting GUD . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 24.6.2 Debugger Operation . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 24.6.3 Commands of GUD . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 24.6.4 GUD Customization . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 24.6.5 GDB Graphical Interface . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 24.6.5.1 GDB User Interface Layout . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 24.6.5.2 Source Buers . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 24.6.5.3 Breakpoints Buer . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 24.6.5.4 Threads Buer . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 24.6.5.5 Stack Buer . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 24.6.5.6 Other GDB Buers . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 24.6.5.7 Watch Expressions . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 24.6.5.8 Multithreaded Debugging . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 24.7 Executing Lisp Expressions . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 24.8 Libraries of Lisp Code for Emacs . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 24.9 Evaluating Emacs Lisp Expressions . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 24.10 Lisp Interaction Buers . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 24.11 Running an External Lisp . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 271 272 274 275 276 276 276 277 278 280 281 281 282 282 283 284 284 285 286 287 287 288 290 290

xii

25

Maintaining Large Programs . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 292


25.1 Version Control . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 25.1.1 Introduction to Version Control . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 25.1.1.1 Understanding the problems it addresses . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 25.1.1.2 Supported Version Control Systems . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 25.1.1.3 Concepts of Version Control . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 25.1.1.4 Merge-based vs lock-based Version Control . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 25.1.1.5 Changeset-based vs File-based Version Control . . . . . . . . . . . 25.1.1.6 Decentralized vs Centralized Repositories . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 25.1.1.7 Types of Log File . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 25.1.2 Version Control and the Mode Line . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 25.1.3 Basic Editing under Version Control . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 25.1.3.1 Basic Version Control with Merging . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 25.1.3.2 Basic Version Control with Locking . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 25.1.3.3 Advanced Control in C-x v v . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 25.1.4 Features of the Log Entry Buer . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 25.1.5 Registering a File for Version Control . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 25.1.6 Examining And Comparing Old Revisions . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 25.1.7 VC Change Log . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 25.1.8 Undoing Version Control Actions . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 25.1.9 VC Directory Mode . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 25.1.9.1 The VC Directory Buer . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 25.1.9.2 VC Directory Commands . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 25.1.10 Version Control Branches . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 25.1.10.1 Switching between Branches . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 25.1.10.2 Pulling Changes into a Branch . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 25.1.10.3 Merging Branches . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 25.1.10.4 Creating New Branches . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 25.2 Change Logs . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 25.2.1 Change Log Commands . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 25.2.2 Format of ChangeLog . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 25.3 Tags Tables . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 25.3.1 Source File Tag Syntax . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 25.3.2 Creating Tags Tables . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 25.3.3 Etags Regexps . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 25.3.4 Selecting a Tags Table . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 25.3.5 Finding a Tag . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 25.3.6 Searching and Replacing with Tags Tables . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 25.3.7 Tags Table Inquiries . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 25.4 Emacs Development Environment . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 292 292 292 293 293 294 295 295 295 296 296 297 298 298 299 300 300 302 304 304 305 305 307 307 308 308 309 309 310 310 311 312 314 315 317 317 318 319 320

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26

Abbrevs . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 322
26.1 26.2 26.3 26.4 26.5 26.6 26.7 Abbrev Concepts . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Dening Abbrevs . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Controlling Abbrev Expansion . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Examining and Editing Abbrevs . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Saving Abbrevs . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Dynamic Abbrev Expansion . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Customizing Dynamic Abbreviation . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 322 322 323 324 325 326 327

27

Dired, the Directory Editor . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 329


27.1 27.2 27.3 27.4 27.5 27.6 27.7 27.8 27.9 27.10 27.11 27.12 27.13 27.14 27.15 27.16 27.17 27.18 Entering Dired . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Navigation in the Dired Buer . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Deleting Files with Dired . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Flagging Many Files at Once . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Visiting Files in Dired . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Dired Marks vs. Flags . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Operating on Files . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Shell Commands in Dired . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Transforming File Names in Dired . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . File Comparison with Dired . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Subdirectories in Dired . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Moving Over Subdirectories . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Hiding Subdirectories . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Updating the Dired Buer . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Dired and find . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Editing the Dired Buer . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Viewing Image Thumbnails in Dired . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Other Dired Features . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 329 330 330 331 332 333 335 337 338 339 339 340 340 341 342 343 343 344

28

The Calendar and the Diary . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 346


28.1 Movement in the Calendar . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 28.1.1 Motion by Standard Lengths of Time . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 28.1.2 Beginning or End of Week, Month or Year . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 28.1.3 Specied Dates . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 28.2 Scrolling in the Calendar . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 28.3 Counting Days . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 28.4 Miscellaneous Calendar Commands . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 28.5 Writing Calendar Files . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 28.6 Holidays . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 28.7 Times of Sunrise and Sunset . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 28.8 Phases of the Moon . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 28.9 Conversion To and From Other Calendars . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 28.9.1 Supported Calendar Systems . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 28.9.2 Converting To Other Calendars . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 28.9.3 Converting From Other Calendars . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 346 346 347 347 348 348 349 349 351 352 353 353 354 355 356

xiv 28.9.4 Converting from the Mayan Calendar . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 28.10 The Diary . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 28.10.1 Displaying the Diary . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 28.10.2 The Diary File . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 28.10.3 Date Formats . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 28.10.4 Commands to Add to the Diary . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 28.10.5 Special Diary Entries . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 28.11 Appointments . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 28.12 Importing and Exporting Diary Entries . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 28.13 Daylight Saving Time . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 28.14 Summing Time Intervals . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 357 358 359 360 360 361 362 364 364 365 366

29

Sending Mail . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 367


29.1 The Format of the Mail Buer . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 29.2 Mail Header Fields . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 29.3 Mail Aliases . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 29.4 Mail Commands . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 29.4.1 Mail Sending . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 29.4.2 Mail Header Editing . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 29.4.3 Citing Mail . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 29.4.4 Mail Miscellany . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 29.5 Mail Signature . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 29.6 Mail Amusements . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 29.7 Mail-Composition Methods . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 367 368 370 370 370 372 373 373 374 374 375

30

Reading Mail with Rmail . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 376


30.1 Basic Concepts of Rmail . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 30.2 Scrolling Within a Message . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 30.3 Moving Among Messages . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 30.4 Deleting Messages . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 30.5 Rmail Files and Inboxes . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 30.6 Multiple Rmail Files . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 30.7 Copying Messages Out to Files . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 30.8 Labels . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 30.9 Rmail Attributes . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 30.10 Sending Replies . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 30.11 Summaries . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 30.11.1 Making Summaries . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 30.11.2 Editing in Summaries . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 30.12 Sorting the Rmail File . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 30.13 Display of Messages . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 30.14 Rmail and Coding Systems . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 30.15 Editing Within a Message . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 30.16 Digest Messages . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 30.17 Reading Rot13 Messages . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 376 376 377 378 379 380 381 383 384 385 386 387 388 390 391 392 392 393 393

xv 30.18 movemail program . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 393 30.19 Retrieving Mail from Remote Mailboxes . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 395 30.20 Retrieving Mail from Local Mailboxes in Various Formats . . . . . . . . . 396

31

Miscellaneous Commands . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 397


31.1 Gnus . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 31.1.1 Gnus Buers . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 31.1.2 When Gnus Starts Up . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 31.1.3 Using the Gnus Group Buer . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 31.1.4 Using the Gnus Summary Buer . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 31.2 Document Viewing . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 31.2.1 DocView Navigation . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 31.2.2 DocView Searching . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 31.2.3 DocView Slicing . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 31.2.4 DocView Conversion . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 31.3 Running Shell Commands from Emacs . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 31.3.1 Single Shell Commands . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 31.3.2 Interactive Subshell . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 31.3.3 Shell Mode . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 31.3.4 Shell Prompts . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 31.3.5 Shell Command History . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 31.3.5.1 Shell History Ring . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 31.3.5.2 Shell History Copying . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 31.3.5.3 Shell History References . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 31.3.6 Directory Tracking . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 31.3.7 Shell Mode Options . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 31.3.8 Emacs Terminal Emulator . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 31.3.9 Term Mode . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 31.3.10 Remote Host Shell . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 31.3.11 Serial Terminal . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 31.4 Using Emacs as a Server . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 31.4.1 Invoking emacsclient . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 31.4.2 emacsclient Options . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 31.5 Printing Hard Copies . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 31.5.1 PostScript Hardcopy . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 31.5.2 Variables for PostScript Hardcopy . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 31.5.3 Printing Package . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 31.6 Sorting Text . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 31.7 Editing Binary Files . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 31.8 Saving Emacs Sessions . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 31.9 Recursive Editing Levels . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 31.10 Emulation . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 31.11 Hyperlinking and Navigation Features . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 31.11.1 Following URLs . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 31.11.2 Activating URLs . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 31.11.3 Finding Files and URLs at Point . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 397 397 397 398 399 399 400 400 400 401 401 402 403 403 406 407 407 408 408 409 409 410 411 411 412 412 413 414 417 418 419 420 420 422 423 424 425 426 426 426 427

xvi 31.12 Other Amusements . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 428

32

Emacs Lisp Packages . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 430


32.1 32.2 32.3 The Package Menu Buer . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 430 Package Installation . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 431 Package Files and Directory Layout . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 432

33

Customization . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 434
33.1 Easy Customization Interface . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 33.1.1 Customization Groups . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 33.1.2 Browsing and Searching for Settings . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 33.1.3 Changing a Variable . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 33.1.4 Saving Customizations . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 33.1.5 Customizing Faces . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 33.1.6 Customizing Specic Items . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 33.1.7 Custom Themes . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 33.1.8 Creating Custom Themes . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 33.2 Variables . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 33.2.1 Examining and Setting Variables . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 33.2.2 Hooks . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 33.2.3 Local Variables . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 33.2.4 Local Variables in Files . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 33.2.4.1 Specifying File Variables . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 33.2.4.2 Safety of File Variables . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 33.2.5 Per-Directory Local Variables . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 33.3 Customizing Key Bindings . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 33.3.1 Keymaps . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 33.3.2 Prex Keymaps . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 33.3.3 Local Keymaps . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 33.3.4 Minibuer Keymaps . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 33.3.5 Changing Key Bindings Interactively . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 33.3.6 Rebinding Keys in Your Init File . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 33.3.7 Modier Keys . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 33.3.8 Rebinding Function Keys . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 33.3.9 Named ASCII Control Characters . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 33.3.10 Rebinding Mouse Buttons . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 33.3.11 Disabling Commands . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 33.4 The Emacs Initialization File . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 33.4.1 Init File Syntax . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 33.4.2 Init File Examples . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 33.4.3 Terminal-specic Initialization . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 33.4.4 How Emacs Finds Your Init File . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 33.4.5 Non-ASCII Characters in Init Files . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 434 434 435 436 438 439 440 441 442 443 443 445 446 447 447 449 450 452 452 453 453 454 454 455 456 457 458 459 460 461 462 463 465 466 466

xvii

34

Dealing with Common Problems . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 468


34.1 Quitting and Aborting . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 34.2 Dealing with Emacs Trouble . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 34.2.1 If DEL Fails to Delete . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 34.2.2 Recursive Editing Levels . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 34.2.3 Garbage on the Screen . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 34.2.4 Garbage in the Text . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 34.2.5 Running out of Memory . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 34.2.6 Recovery After a Crash . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 34.2.7 Emergency Escape . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 34.3 Reporting Bugs . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 34.3.1 Reading Existing Bug Reports and Known Problems . . . . . . . . . . 34.3.2 When Is There a Bug . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 34.3.3 Understanding Bug Reporting . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 34.3.4 Checklist for Bug Reports . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 34.3.5 Sending Patches for GNU Emacs . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 34.4 Contributing to Emacs Development . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 34.5 How To Get Help with GNU Emacs . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 468 469 470 470 470 471 471 471 472 473 473 474 475 475 481 483 483

Appendix A Appendix B

GNU GENERAL PUBLIC LICENSE . . . . 484 GNU Free Documentation License . . . . . . . . 496

Appendix C Command Line Arguments for Emacs Invocation . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 505


C.1 C.2 C.3 C.4 Action Arguments . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Initial Options . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Command Argument Example . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Environment Variables . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . C.4.1 General Variables . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . C.4.2 Miscellaneous Variables . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . C.4.3 The MS-Windows System Registry . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . C.5 Specifying the Display Name . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . C.6 Font Specication Options . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . C.7 Window Color Options . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . C.8 Options for Window Size and Position . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . C.9 Internal and External Borders . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . C.10 Frame Titles . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . C.11 Icons . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . C.12 Other Display Options . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 505 507 509 509 510 513 514 514 515 515 517 518 519 519 519

xviii

Appendix D

X Options and Resources . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 521


521 522 523 524 525 525 526

D.1 X Resources . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . D.2 Table of X Resources for Emacs . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . D.3 GTK resources . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . D.3.1 GTK Resource Basics . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . D.3.2 GTK widget names . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . D.3.3 GTK Widget Names in Emacs . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . D.3.4 GTK styles . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

Appendix E Appendix F
F.1

Emacs 23 Antinews . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 529 Emacs and Mac OS / GNUstep . . . . . . . . . . . 531


531 531 532 532 532 532 534

Basic Emacs usage under Mac OS and GNUstep . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . F.1.1 Grabbing environment variables . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . F.2 Mac / GNUstep Customization . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . F.2.1 Font and Color Panels . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . F.2.2 Customization options specic to Mac OS / GNUstep . . . . . . . . . . F.3 Windowing System Events under Mac OS / GNUstep . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . F.4 GNUstep Support . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

Appendix G Emacs and Microsoft Windows/MS-DOS . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 535


G.1 G.2 G.3 G.4 G.5 G.6 G.7 G.8 G.9 G.10 G.11 How to Start Emacs on MS-Windows . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Text Files and Binary Files . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . File Names on MS-Windows . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Emulation of ls on MS-Windows . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . HOME and Startup Directories on MS-Windows . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Keyboard Usage on MS-Windows . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Mouse Usage on MS-Windows . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Subprocesses on Windows 9X/ME and Windows NT/2K/XP . . . . . . . Printing and MS-Windows . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Specifying Fonts on MS-Windows . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Miscellaneous Windows-specic features . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 535 536 538 538 538 539 540 540 541 543 545

The GNU Manifesto . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 546


Whats GNU? Gnus Not Unix! . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Why I Must Write GNU . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Why GNU Will Be Compatible with Unix . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . How GNU Will Be Available . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Why Many Other Programmers Want to Help . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . How You Can Contribute . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Why All Computer Users Will Benet . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Some Easily Rebutted Objections to GNUs Goals . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 546 547 547 547 547 548 548 549

xix

Glossary . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 555 Key (Character) Index . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 580 Command and Function Index . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 590 Variable Index . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 604 Concept Index . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 612

Preface

Preface
This manual documents the use and simple customization of the Emacs editor. Simple Emacs customizations do not require you to be a programmer, but if you are not interested in customizing, you can ignore the customization hints. This is primarily a reference manual, but can also be used as a primer. If you are new to Emacs, we recommend you start with the integrated, learn-by-doing tutorial, before reading the manual. To run the tutorial, start Emacs and type C-h t. The tutorial describes commands, tells you when to try them, and explains the results. The tutorial is available in several languages. On rst reading, just skim chapters 1 and 2, which describe the notational conventions of the manual and the general appearance of the Emacs display screen. Note which questions are answered in these chapters, so you can refer back later. After reading chapter 4, you should practice the commands shown there. The next few chapters describe fundamental techniques and concepts that are used constantly. You need to understand them thoroughly, so experiment with them until you are uent. Chapters 14 through 19 describe intermediate-level features that are useful for many kinds of editing. Chapter 20 and following chapters describe optional but useful features; read those chapters when you need them. Read the Common Problems chapter if Emacs does not seem to be working properly. It explains how to cope with several common problems (see Section 34.2 [Dealing with Emacs Trouble], page 469), as well as when and how to report Emacs bugs (see Section 34.3 [Bugs], page 473). To nd the documentation of a particular command, look in the index. Keys (character commands) and command names have separate indexes. There is also a glossary, with a cross reference for each term. This manual is available as a printed book and also as an Info le. The Info le is for reading from Emacs itself, or with the Info program. Info is the principal format for documentation in the GNU system. The Info le and the printed book contain substantially the same text and are generated from the same source les, which are also distributed with GNU Emacs. GNU Emacs is a member of the Emacs editor family. There are many Emacs editors, all sharing common principles of organization. For information on the underlying philosophy of Emacs and the lessons learned from its development, see Emacs, the Extensible, Customizable Self-Documenting Display Editor, available from ftp://publications.ai.mit.edu/ai-publications/pdf/AIM-519A.pdf. This version of the manual is mainly intended for use with GNU Emacs installed on GNU and Unix systems. GNU Emacs can also be used on MS-DOS, Microsoft Windows, and Macintosh systems. The Info le version of this manual contains some more information about using Emacs on those systems. Those systems use dierent le name syntax; in addition MS-DOS does not support all GNU Emacs features. See Appendix G [Microsoft Windows], page 535, for information about using Emacs on Windows. See Appendix F [Mac OS / GNUstep], page 531, for information about using Emacs on Macintosh (and GNUstep).

Distribution

Distribution
GNU Emacs is free software ; this means that everyone is free to use it and free to redistribute it under certain conditions. GNU Emacs is not in the public domain; it is copyrighted and there are restrictions on its distribution, but these restrictions are designed to permit everything that a good cooperating citizen would want to do. What is not allowed is to try to prevent others from further sharing any version of GNU Emacs that they might get from you. The precise conditions are found in the GNU General Public License that comes with Emacs and also appears in this manual1 . See Appendix A [Copying], page 484. One way to get a copy of GNU Emacs is from someone else who has it. You need not ask for our permission to do so, or tell any one else; just copy it. If you have access to the Internet, you can get the latest distribution version of GNU Emacs by anonymous FTP; see http://www.gnu.org/software/emacs on our website for more information. You may also receive GNU Emacs when you buy a computer. Computer manufacturers are free to distribute copies on the same terms that apply to everyone else. These terms require them to give you the full sources, including whatever changes they may have made, and to permit you to redistribute the GNU Emacs received from them under the usual terms of the General Public License. In other words, the program must be free for you when you get it, not just free for the manufacturer. If you nd GNU Emacs useful, please send a donation to the Free Software Foundation to support our work. Donations to the Free Software Foundation are tax deductible in the US. If you use GNU Emacs at your workplace, please suggest that the company make a donation. For more information on how you can help, see http://www.gnu.org/help/help.html. We also sell hardcopy versions of this manual and An Introduction to Programming in Emacs Lisp, by Robert J. Chassell. You can visit our online store at http://shop.fsf.org/. The income from sales goes to support the foundations purpose: the development of new free software, and improvements to our existing programs including GNU Emacs. To contact the FSF, go to http://www.fsf.org/about/contact/, or write to Free Software Foundation 51 Franklin Street, Fifth Floor Boston, MA 02110-1301 USA

Acknowledgments
Contributors to GNU Emacs include Jari Aalto, Per Abrahamsen, Tomas Abrahamsson, Jay K. Adams, Alon Albert, Michael Albinus, Nagy Andras, Benjamin Andresen, Ralf Angeli, Joe Arceneaux, Emil Astr om, Miles Bader, David Bakhash,
1

This manual is itself covered by the GNU Free Documentation License. This license is similar in spirit to the General Public License, but is more suitable for documentation. See Appendix B [GNU Free Documentation License], page 496.

Distribution

Juanma Barranquero, Eli Barzilay, Thomas Baumann, Steven L. Baur, Jay Belanger, Alexander L. Beliko, Thomas Bellman, Scott Bender, Boaz Ben-Zvi, Sergey Berezin, Karl Berry, Anna M. Bigatti, Ray Blaak, Martin Blais, Jim Blandy, Johan Bockg ard, Jan B ocker, Joel Boehland, Lennart Borgman, Per Bothner, Terrence Brannon, Frank Bresz, Peter Breton, Emmanuel Briot, Kevin Broadey, Vincent Broman, Michael Brouwer, David M. Brown, Stefan Bruda, Georges BrunCottan, Joe Buehler, Scott Byer, Wlodek Bzyl, Bill Carpenter, Per Cederqvist, Hans Chalupsky, Chris Chase, Bob Chassell, Andrew Choi, Chong Yidong, Sacha Chua, Stewart Clamen, James Clark, Mike Clarkson, Glynn Clements, Andrew Cohen, Daniel Colascione, Edward OConnor, Christoph Conrad, Ludovic Court` es, Andrew Csillag, Toby Cubitt, Baoqiu Cui, Doug Cutting, Mathias Dahl, Julien Danjou, Satyaki Das, Vivek Dasmohapatra, Dan Davison, Michael DeCorte, Gary Delp, Nachum Dershowitz, Dave Detlefs, Matthieu Devin, Christophe de Dinechin, Eri Ding, Jan Dj arv, Lawrence R. Dodd, Carsten Dominik, Scott Draves, Benjamin Drieu, Viktor Dukhovni, Jacques Duthen, Dmitry Dzhus, John Eaton, Rolf Ebert, Carl Edman, David Edmondson, Paul Eggert, Stephen Eglen, Christian Egli, Torbj orn Einarsson, Tsugutomo Enami, David Engster, Hans Henrik Eriksen, Michael Ernst, Ata Etemadi, Frederick Farnbach, Oscar Figueiredo, Fred Fish, Steve Fisk, Karl Fogel, Gary Foster, Eric S. Fraga, Romain Francoise, Noah Friedman, Andreas Fuchs, Shigeru Fukaya, Hallvard Furuseth, Keith Gabryelski, Peter S. Galbraith, Kevin Gallagher, Kevin Gallo, Juan Le on Lahoz Garc a, Howard Gayle, Daniel German, Stephen Gildea, Julien Gilles, David Gillespie, Bob Glickstein, Deepak Goel, David De La Harpe Golden, Boris Goldowsky, David Goodger, Chris Gray, Kevin Greiner, Michelangelo Grigni, Odd Gripenstam, Kai Grojohann, Michael Gschwind, Bastien Guerry, Henry Guillaume, Doug Gwyn, Bruno Haible, Kenichi Handa, Lars Hansen, Chris Hanson, Jesper Harder, Alexandru Harsanyi, K. Shane Hartman, John Heidemann, Jon K. Hellan, Magnus Henoch, Markus Heritsch, Dirk Herrmann, Karl Heuer, Manabu Higashida, Konrad Hinsen, Anders Holst, Jerey C. Honig, Tassilo Horn, Kurt Hornik, Tom Houlder, Joakim Hove, Denis Howe, Lars Ingebrigtsen, Andrew Innes, Seiichiro Inoue, Philip Jackson, Martyn Jago, Pavel Janik, Paul Jarc, Ulf Jasper, Thorsten Jolitz, Michael K. Johnson, Kyle Jones, Terry Jones, Simon Josefsson, Alexandre Julliard, Arne Jrgensen, Tomoji Kagatani, Brewster Kahle, Tokuya Kameshima, Lute Kamstra, Ivan Kanis, David Kastrup, David Kaufman, Henry Kautz, Taichi Kawabata, Taro Kawagishi, Howard Kaye, Michael Kifer, Richard King, Peter Kleiweg, Karel Kl c, Shuhei Kobayashi, Pavel Kobyakov, Larry K. Kolodney, David M. Koppelman, Koseki Yoshinori, Robert Krawitz, Sebastian Kremer, Ryszard Kubiak, Igor Kuzmin, David K agedal, Daniel LaLiberte, Karl Landstrom, Mario Lang, Aaron Larson, James R. Larus, Vinicius Jose Latorre, Werner Lemberg, Frederic Lepied, Peter Liljenberg, Christian Limpach, Lars Lindberg, Chris Lindblad, Anders Lindgren, Thomas Link, Juri Linkov, Francis Litterio, Sergey Litvinov, Emilio C. Lopes, Martin Lorentzon, Dave Love, Eric Ludlam, K aroly L orentey, Sascha L udecke, Greg McGary, Roland McGrath, Michael McNamara, Alan Mackenzie, Christopher J. Madsen, Neil M. Mager, Ken Manheimer, Bill Mann, Brian Marick, Simon Marshall, Bengt Martensson, Charlie Martin, Yukihiro Matsumoto, David Maus, Thomas May, Will Mengarini, David Megginson, Stefan Merten, Ben A. Mesander, Wayne Mesard,

Distribution

Brad Miller, Lawrence Mitchell, Richard Mlynarik, Gerd Moellmann, Stefan Monnier, Keith Moore, Jan Moringen, Morioka Tomohiko, Glenn Morris, Don Morrison, Diane Murray, Riccardo Murri, Sen Nagata, Erik Naggum, Gergely Nagy, Nobuyoshi Nakada, Thomas Neumann, Mike Newton, Thien-Thi Nguyen, Jurgen Nickelsen, Dan Nicolaescu, Hrvoje Niksic, Je Norden, Andrew Norman, Kentaro Ohkouchi, Christian Ohler, Kenichi Okada, Alexandre Oliva, Bob Olson, Michael Olson, Takaaki Ota, Pieter E. J. Pareit, Ross Patterson, David Pearson, Juan Pechiar, Je Peck, Damon Anton Permezel, Tom Perrine, William M. Perry, Per Persson, Jens Petersen, Daniel Pfeier, Justus Piater, Richard L. Pieri, Fred Pierresteguy, Fran cois Pinard, Daniel Pittman, Christian Plaunt, Alexander Pohoyda, David Ponce, Francesco A. Potorti, Michael D. Prange, Mukesh Prasad, Ken Raeburn, Marko Rahamaa, Ashwin Ram, Eric S. Raymond, Paul Reilly, Edward M. Reingold, David Reitter, Alex Rezinsky, Rob Riepel, Lara Rios, Adrian Robert, Nick Roberts, Roland B. Roberts, John Robinson, Denis B. Roegel, Danny Roozendaal, Sebastian Rose, William Rosenblatt, Markus Rost, Guillermo J. Rozas, Martin Rudalics, Ivar Rummelho, Jason Rumney, Wolfgang Rupprecht, Benjamin Rutt, Kevin Ryde, James B. Salem, Masahiko Sato, Timo Savola, Jorgen Schaefer, Holger Schauer, William Schelter, Ralph Schleicher, Gregor Schmid, Michael Schmidt, Ronald S. Schnell, Philippe Schnoebelen, Jan Schormann, Alex Schroeder, Stefan Schoef, Rainer Schoepf, Raymond Scholz, Eric Schulte, Andreas Schwab, Randal Schwartz, Oliver Seidel, Manuel Serrano, Paul Sexton, Hovav Shacham, Stanislav Shalunov, Marc Shapiro, Richard Sharman, Olin Shivers, Tibor Simko, Espen Skoglund, Rick Sladkey, Lynn Slater, Chris Smith, David Smith, Paul D. Smith, Wilson Snyder, William Sommerfeld, Simon South, Andre Spiegel, Michael Staats, Thomas Steen, Ulf Stegemann, Reiner Steib, Sam Steingold, Ake Stenho, Peter Stephenson, Ken Stevens, Andy Stewart, Jonathan Stigelman, Martin Stjernholm, Kim F. Storm, Steve Strassmann, Christopher Suckling, Olaf Sylvester, Naoto Takahashi, Steven Tamm, Luc Teirlinck, Jean-Philippe Theberge, Jens T. Berger Thielemann, Spencer Thomas, Jim Thompson, Toru Tomabechi, David OToole, Markus Triska, Tom Tromey, Enami Tsugutomo, Eli Tziperman, Daiki Ueno, Masanobu Umeda, Rajesh Vaidheeswarran, Neil W. Van Dyke, Didier Verna, Joakim Verona, Ulrik Vieth, Georey Voelker, Johan Vromans, Inge Wallin, John Paul Wallington, Colin Walters, Barry Warsaw, Christoph Wedler, Ilja Weis, Zhang Weize, Morten Welinder, Joseph Brian Wells, Rodney Whitby, John Wiegley, Sascha Wilde, Ed Wilkinson, Mike Williams, Roland Winkler, Bill Wohler, Steven A. Wood, Dale R. Worley, Francis J. Wright, Felix S. T. Wu, Tom Wurgler, Yamamoto Mitsuharu, Katsumi Yamaoka, Masatake Yamato, Jonathan Yavner, Ryan Yeske, Ilya Zakharevich, Milan Zamazal, Victor Zandy, Eli Zaretskii, Jamie Zawinski, Andrew Zhilin, Shenghuo Zhu, Piotr Zielinski, Ian T. Zimmermann, Reto Zimmermann, Neal Ziring, Teodor Zlatanov, and Detlev Zundel.

Introduction

Introduction
You are reading about GNU Emacs, the GNU incarnation of the advanced, selfdocumenting, customizable, extensible editor Emacs. (The G in GNU is not silent.) We call Emacs advanced because it can do much more than simple insertion and deletion of text. It can control subprocesses, indent programs automatically, show multiple les at once, and more. Emacs editing commands operate in terms of characters, words, lines, sentences, paragraphs, and pages, as well as expressions and comments in various programming languages. Self-documenting means that at any time you can use special commands, known as help commands, to nd out what your options are, or to nd out what any command does, or to nd all the commands that pertain to a given topic. See Chapter 7 [Help], page 38. Customizable means that you can easily alter the behavior of Emacs commands in simple ways. For instance, if you use a programming language in which comments start with <** and end with **>, you can tell the Emacs comment manipulation commands to use those strings (see Section 23.5 [Comments], page 258). To take another example, you can rebind the basic cursor motion commands (up, down, left and right) to any keys on the keyboard that you nd comfortable. See Chapter 33 [Customization], page 434. Extensible means that you can go beyond simple customization and create entirely new commands. New commands are simply programs written in the Lisp language, which are run by Emacss own Lisp interpreter. Existing commands can even be redened in the middle of an editing session, without having to restart Emacs. Most of the editing commands in Emacs are written in Lisp; the few exceptions could have been written in Lisp but use C instead for eciency. Writing an extension is programming, but non-programmers can use it afterwards. See Section Preface in An Introduction to Programming in Emacs Lisp , if you want to learn Emacs Lisp programming.

Chapter 1: The Organization of the Screen

1 The Organization of the Screen


On a graphical display, such as on GNU/Linux using the X Window System, Emacs occupies a graphical window. On a text terminal, Emacs occupies the entire terminal screen. We will use the term frame to mean a graphical window or terminal screen occupied by Emacs. Emacs behaves very similarly on both kinds of frames. It normally starts out with just one frame, but you can create additional frames if you wish (see Chapter 18 [Frames], page 165). Each frame consists of several distinct regions. At the top of the frame is a menu bar, which allows you to access commands via a series of menus. On a graphical display, directly below the menu bar is a tool bar, a row of icons that perform editing commands if you click on them. At the very bottom of the frame is an echo area, where informative messages are displayed and where you enter information when Emacs asks for it. The main area of the frame, below the tool bar (if one exists) and above the echo area, is called the window. Henceforth in this manual, we will use the word window in this sense. Graphical display systems commonly use the word window with a dierent meaning; but, as stated above, we refer to those graphical windows as frames. An Emacs window is where the buerthe text you are editingis displayed. On a graphical display, the window possesses a scroll bar on one side, which can be used to scroll through the buer. The last line of the window is a mode line. This displays various information about what is going on in the buer, such as whether there are unsaved changes, the editing modes that are in use, the current line number, and so forth. When you start Emacs, there is normally only one window in the frame. However, you can subdivide this window horizontally or vertically to create multiple windows, each of which can independently display a buer (see Chapter 17 [Windows], page 159). At any time, one window is the selected window. On a graphical display, the selected window shows a more prominent cursor (usually solid and blinking); other windows show a less prominent cursor (usually a hollow box). On a text terminal, there is only one cursor, which is shown in the selected window. The buer displayed in the selected window is called the current buer, and it is where editing happens. Most Emacs commands implicitly apply to the current buer; the text displayed in unselected windows is mostly visible for reference. If you use multiple frames on a graphical display, selecting a particular frame selects a window in that frame.

1.1 Point
The cursor in the selected window shows the location where most editing commands take eect, which is called point1 . Many Emacs commands move point to dierent
1

The term point comes from the character ., which was the command in TECO (the language in which the original Emacs was written) for accessing the editing position.

Chapter 1: The Organization of the Screen

places in the buer; for example, you can place point by clicking mouse button 1 (normally the left button) at the desired location. By default, the cursor in the selected window is drawn as a solid block and appears to be on a character, but you should think of point as between two characters; it is situated before the character under the cursor. For example, if your text looks like frob with the cursor over the b, then point is between the o and the b. If you insert the character ! at that position, the result is fro!b, with point between the ! and the b. Thus, the cursor remains over the b, as before. If you are editing several les in Emacs, each in its own buer, each buer has its own value of point. A buer that is not currently displayed remembers its value of point if you later display it again. Furthermore, if a buer is displayed in multiple windows, each of those windows has its own value of point. See Section 11.20 [Cursor Display], page 88, for options that control how Emacs displays the cursor.

1.2 The Echo Area


The line at the very bottom of the frame is the echo area. It is used to display small amounts of text for various purposes. The echo area is so-named because one of the things it is used for is echoing, which means displaying the characters of a multi-character command as you type. Single-character commands are not echoed. Multi-character commands (see Section 2.2 [Keys], page 11) are echoed if you pause for more than a second in the middle of a command. Emacs then echoes all the characters of the command so far, to prompt you for the rest. Once echoing has started, the rest of the command echoes immediately as you type it. This behavior is designed to give condent users fast response, while giving hesitant users maximum feedback. The echo area is also used to display an error message when a command cannot do its job. Error messages may be accompanied by beeping or by ashing the screen. Some commands display informative messages in the echo area to tell you what the command has done, or to provide you with some specic information. These informative messages, unlike error messages, are not accompanied with a beep or ash. For example, C-x = (hold down CTRL and type x, then let go of CTRL and type =) displays a message describing the character at point, its position in the buer, and its current column in the window. Commands that take a long time often display messages ending in ... while they are working (sometimes also indicating how much progress has been made, as a percentage), and add done when they are nished. Informative echo area messages are saved in a special buer named *Messages*. (We have not explained buers yet; see Chapter 16 [Buers], page 150, for more information about them.) If you miss a message that appeared briey on the screen, you can switch to the *Messages* buer to see it again. The *Messages* buer is limited to a certain number of lines, specied by the variable message-log-max. (We have not explained variables either; see Section 33.2 [Variables], page 443, for

Chapter 1: The Organization of the Screen

more information about them.) Beyond this limit, one line is deleted from the beginning whenever a new message line is added at the end. See Section 11.23 [Display Custom], page 90, for options that control how Emacs uses the echo area. The echo area is also used to display the minibuer, a special window where you can input arguments to commands, such as the name of a le to be edited. When the minibuer is in use, the text displayed in the echo area begins with a prompt string, and the active cursor appears within the minibuer, which is temporarily considered the selected window. You can always get out of the minibuer by typing C-g. See Chapter 5 [Minibuer], page 27.

1.3 The Mode Line


At the bottom of each window is a mode line, which describes what is going on in the current buer. When there is only one window, the mode line appears right above the echo area; it is the next-to-last line in the frame. On a graphical display, the mode line is drawn with a 3D box appearance. Emacs also usually draws the mode line of the selected window with a dierent color than that of unselected windows, in order to make it stand out. The text displayed in the mode line has the following format: cs :ch-fr buf pos line (major minor ) On a text terminal, this text is followed by a series of dashes extending to the right edge of the window. These dashes are omitted on a graphical display. The cs string and the colon character after it describe the character set and newline convention used for the current buer. Normally, Emacs automatically handles these settings for you, but it is sometimes useful to have this information. cs describes the character set of the text in the buer (see Section 19.6 [Coding Systems], page 188). If it is a dash (-), that indicates no special character set handling (with the possible exception of end-of-line conventions, described in the next paragraph). = means no conversion whatsoever, and is usually used for les containing non-textual data. Other characters represent various coding systems for example, 1 represents ISO Latin-1. On a text terminal, cs is preceded by two additional characters that describe the coding systems for keyboard input and terminal output. Furthermore, if you are using an input method, cs is preceded by a string that identies the input method (see Section 19.4 [Input Methods], page 185). The character after cs is usually a colon. If a dierent string is displayed, that indicates a nontrivial end-of-line convention for encoding a le. Usually, lines of text are separated by newline characters in a le, but two other conventions are sometimes used. The MS-DOS convention uses a carriage-return character followed by a linefeed character; when editing such les, the colon changes to either a backslash (\) or (DOS), depending on the operating system. Another convention, employed by older Macintosh systems, uses a carriage-return character instead of a newline; when editing such les, the colon changes to either a forward slash (/)

Chapter 1: The Organization of the Screen

or (Mac). On some systems, Emacs displays (Unix) instead of the colon for les that use newline as the line separator. The next element on the mode line is the string indicated by ch. This shows two dashes (--) if the buer displayed in the window has the same contents as the corresponding le on the disk; i.e., if the buer is unmodied. If the buer is modied, it shows two stars (**). For a read-only buer, it shows %* if the buer is modied, and %% otherwise. The character after ch is normally a dash (-). However, if the defaultdirectory for the current buer is on a remote machine, @ is displayed instead (see Section 15.1 [File Names], page 124). fr gives the selected frame name (see Chapter 18 [Frames], page 165). It appears only on text terminals. The initial frames name is F1. buf is the name of the buer displayed in the window. Usually, this is the same as the name of a le you are editing. See Chapter 16 [Buers], page 150. pos tells you whether there is additional text above the top of the window, or below the bottom. If your buer is small and all of it is visible in the window, pos is All. Otherwise, it is Top if you are looking at the beginning of the buer, Bot if you are looking at the end of the buer, or nn %, where nn is the percentage of the buer above the top of the window. With Size Indication mode, you can display the size of the buer as well. See Section 11.18 [Optional Mode Line], page 85. line is the character L followed by the line number at point. (You can display the current column number too, by turning on Column Number mode. See Section 11.18 [Optional Mode Line], page 85.) major is the name of the major mode used in the buer. A major mode is a principal editing mode for the buer, such as Text mode, Lisp mode, C mode, and so forth. See Section 20.1 [Major Modes], page 204. Some major modes display additional information after the major mode name. For example, Compilation buers and Shell buers display the status of the subprocess. minor is a list of some of the enabled minor modes, which are optional editing modes that provide additional features on top of the major mode. See Section 20.2 [Minor Modes], page 205. Some features are listed together with the minor modes whenever they are turned on, even though they are not really minor modes. Narrow means that the buer being displayed has editing restricted to only a portion of its text (see Section 11.5 [Narrowing], page 74). Def means that a keyboard macro is currently being dened (see Chapter 14 [Keyboard Macros], page 116). In addition, if Emacs is inside a recursive editing level, square brackets ([...]) appear around the parentheses that surround the modes. If Emacs is in one recursive editing level within another, double square brackets appear, and so on. Since recursive editing levels aect Emacs globally, such square brackets appear in the mode line of every window. See Section 31.9 [Recursive Edit], page 424. You can change the appearance of the mode line as well as the format of its contents. See Section 11.18 [Optional Mode Line], page 85. In addition, the mode line is mouse-sensitive; clicking on dierent parts of the mode line performs various commands. See Section 18.5 [Mode Line Mouse], page 169.

Chapter 1: The Organization of the Screen

10

1.4 The Menu Bar


Each Emacs frame normally has a menu bar at the top which you can use to perform common operations. Theres no need to list them here, as you can more easily see them yourself. On a graphical display, you can use the mouse to choose a command from the menu bar. An arrow on the right edge of a menu item means it leads to a subsidiary menu, or submenu. A ... at the end of a menu item means that the command will prompt you for further input before it actually does anything. Some of the commands in the menu bar have ordinary key bindings as well; if so, a key binding is shown in parentheses after the item itself. To view the full command name and documentation for a menu item, type C-h k, and then select the menu bar with the mouse in the usual way (see Section 7.1 [Key Help], page 40). Instead of using the mouse, you can also invoke the rst menu bar item by pressing F10 (to run the command menu-bar-open). You can then navigate the menus with the arrow keys. To activate a selected menu item, press RET; to cancel menu navigation, press ESC. On a text terminal, you can use the menu bar by typing M- or F10 (these run the command tmm-menubar). This lets you select a menu item with the keyboard. A provisional choice appears in the echo area. You can use the up and down arrow keys to move through the menu to dierent items, and then you can type RET to select the item. Each menu item is also designated by a letter or digit (usually the initial of some word in the items name). This letter or digit is separated from the item name by =>. You can type the items letter or digit to select the item.

Chapter 2: Characters, Keys and Commands

11

2 Characters, Keys and Commands


This chapter explains the character sets used by Emacs for input commands, and the fundamental concepts of keys and commands, whereby Emacs interprets your keyboard and mouse input.

2.1 Kinds of User Input


GNU Emacs is primarily designed for use with the keyboard. While it is possible to use the mouse to issue editing commands through the menu bar and tool bar, that is not as ecient as using the keyboard. Therefore, this manual mainly documents how to edit with the keyboard. Keyboard input into Emacs is based on a heavily-extended version of ASCII. Simple characters, like a, B, 3, =, and the space character (denoted as SPC), are entered by typing the corresponding key. Control characters, such as RET, TAB, DEL, ESC, F1, HOME, and LEFT, are also entered this way, as are certain characters found on non-English keyboards (see Chapter 19 [International], page 180). Emacs also recognizes control characters that are entered using modier keys. Two commonly-used modier keys are CONTROL (usually labeled CTRL), and META (usually labeled ALT)1 . For example, Control-a is entered by holding down the CTRL key while pressing a; we will refer to this as C-a for short. Similarly Meta-a, or M-a for short, is entered by holding down the ALT key and pressing a. Modier keys can also be applied to non-alphanumerical characters, e.g. C-F1 or M-LEFT. You can also type Meta characters using two-character sequences starting with ESC. Thus, you can enter M-a by typing ESC a. You can enter C-M-a by typing ESC C-a. Unlike META, ESC is entered as a separate character. You dont hold down ESC while typing the next character; instead, press ESC and release it, then enter the next character. This feature is useful on certain text terminals where the META key does not function reliably. On graphical displays, the window manager might block some keyboard inputs, including M-TAB, M-SPC, C-M-d and C-M-l. If you have this problem, you can either customize your window manager to not block those keys, or rebind the aected Emacs commands (see Chapter 33 [Customization], page 434). Simple characters and control characters, as well as certain non-keyboard inputs such as mouse clicks, are collectively referred to as input events. For details about how Emacs internally handles input events, see Section Input Events in The Emacs Lisp Reference Manual .

2.2 Keys
Some Emacs commands are invoked by just one input event; for example, C-f moves forward one character in the buer. Other commands take two or more input events to invoke, such as C-x C-f and C-x 4 C-f.
1

We refer to ALT as META for historical reasons.

Chapter 2: Characters, Keys and Commands

12

A key sequence, or key for short, is a sequence of one or more input events that is meaningful as a unit. If a key sequence invokes a command, we call it a complete key ; for example, C-f, C-x C-f and C-x 4 C-f are all complete keys. If a key sequence isnt long enough to invoke a command, we call it a prex key ; from the preceding example, we see that C-x and C-x 4 are prex keys. Every key sequence is either a complete key or a prex key. A prex key combines with the following input event to make a longer key sequence. For example, C-x is a prex key, so typing C-x alone does not invoke a command; instead, Emacs waits for further input (if you pause for longer than a second, it echoes the C-x key to prompt for that input; see Section 1.2 [Echo Area], page 7). C-x combines with the next input event to make a two-event key sequence, which could itself be a prex key (such as C-x 4), or a complete key (such as C-x C-f). There is no limit to the length of key sequences, but in practice they are seldom longer than three or four input events. You cant add input events onto a complete key. For example, because C-f is a complete key, the two-event sequence C-f C-k is two key sequences, not one. By default, the prex keys in Emacs are C-c, C-h, C-x, C-x RET, C-x @, C-x a, C-x n, C-x r, C-x v, C-x 4, C-x 5, C-x 6, ESC, M-g, and M-o. (F1 and F2 are aliases for C-h and C-x 6.) This list is not cast in stone; if you customize Emacs, you can make new prex keys. You could even eliminate some of the standard ones, though this is not recommended for most users; for example, if you remove the prex denition of C-x 4, then C-x 4 C-f becomes an invalid key sequence. See Section 33.3 [Key Bindings], page 452. Typing the help character (C-h or F1) after a prex key displays a list of the commands starting with that prex. The sole exception to this rule is ESC: ESC C-h is equivalent to C-M-h, which does something else entirely. You can, however, use F1 to display a list of commands starting with ESC.

2.3 Keys and Commands


This manual is full of passages that tell you what particular keys do. But Emacs does not assign meanings to keys directly. Instead, Emacs assigns meanings to named commands, and then gives keys their meanings by binding them to commands. Every command has a name chosen by a programmer. The name is usually made of a few English words separated by dashes; for example, next-line or forwardword. Internally, each command is a special type of Lisp function, and the actions associated with the command are performed by running the function. See Section What Is a Function in The Emacs Lisp Reference Manual . The bindings between keys and commands are recorded in tables called keymaps. See Section 33.3.1 [Keymaps], page 452. When we say that C-n moves down vertically one line we are glossing over a subtle distinction that is irrelevant in ordinary use, but vital for Emacs customization. The command next-line does a vertical move downward. C-n has this eect because it is bound to next-line. If you rebind C-n to the command forward-word, C-n will move forward one word instead.

Chapter 2: Characters, Keys and Commands

13

In this manual, we will often speak of keys like C-n as commands, even though strictly speaking the key is bound to a command. Usually we state the name of the command which really does the work in parentheses after mentioning the key that runs it. For example, we will say that The command C-n (next-line) moves point vertically down, meaning that the command next-line moves vertically down, and the key C-n is normally bound to it. Since we are discussing customization, we should tell you about variables. Often the description of a command will say, To change this, set the variable mumblefoo. A variable is a name used to store a value. Most of the variables documented in this manual are meant for customization: some command or other part of Emacs examines the variable and behaves dierently according to the value that you set. You can ignore the information about variables until you are interested in customizing them. Then read the basic information on variables (see Section 33.2 [Variables], page 443) and the information about specic variables will make sense.

Chapter 3: Entering and Exiting Emacs

14

3 Entering and Exiting Emacs


This chapter explains how to enter Emacs, and how to exit it.

3.1 Entering Emacs


The usual way to invoke Emacs is with the shell command emacs. From a terminal window running in the X Window System, you can run Emacs in the background with emacs &; this way, Emacs wont tie up the terminal window, so you can use it to run other shell commands. When Emacs starts up, the initial frame displays a special buer named *GNU Emacs*. This startup screen contains information about Emacs and links to common tasks that are useful for beginning users. For instance, activating the Emacs Tutorial link opens the Emacs tutorial; this does the same thing as the command C-h t (help-with-tutorial). To activate a link, either move point onto it and type RET, or click on it with mouse-1 (the left mouse button). Using a command line argument, you can tell Emacs to visit one or more les as soon as it starts up. For example, emacs foo.txt starts Emacs with a buer displaying the contents of the le foo.txt. This feature exists mainly for compatibility with other editors, which are designed to be launched from the shell for short editing sessions. If you call Emacs this way, the initial frame is split into two windowsone showing the specied le, and the other showing the startup screen. See Chapter 17 [Windows], page 159. Generally, it is unnecessary and wasteful to start Emacs afresh each time you want to edit a le. The recommended way to use Emacs is to start it just once, just after you log in, and do all your editing in the same Emacs session. See Chapter 15 [Files], page 124, for information on visiting more than one le. If you use Emacs this way, the Emacs session accumulates valuable context, such as the kill ring, registers, undo history, and mark ring data, which together make editing more convenient. These features are described later in the manual. To edit a le from another program while Emacs is running, you can use the emacsclient helper program to open a le in the existing Emacs session. See Section 31.4 [Emacs Server], page 412. Emacs accepts other command line arguments that tell it to load certain Lisp les, where to put the initial frame, and so forth. See Appendix C [Emacs Invocation], page 505. If the variable inhibit-startup-screen is non-nil, Emacs does not display the startup screen. In that case, if one or more les were specied on the command line, Emacs simply displays those les; otherwise, it displays a buer named *scratch*, which can be used to evaluate Emacs Lisp expressions interactively. See Section 24.10 [Lisp Interaction], page 290. You can set the variable inhibitstartup-screen using the Customize facility (see Section 33.1 [Easy Customiza-

Chapter 3: Entering and Exiting Emacs

15

tion], page 434), or by editing your initialization le (see Section 33.4 [Init File], page 461).1 You can also force Emacs to display a le or directory at startup by setting the variable initial-buffer-choice to a non-nil value. (In that case, even if you specify one or more les on the command line, Emacs opens but does not display them.) The value of initial-buffer-choice should be the name of the desired le or directory.

3.2 Exiting Emacs


C-x C-c C-z Kill Emacs (save-buffers-kill-terminal). On a text terminal, suspend Emacs; on a graphical display, minimize the selected frame (suspend-emacs).

Killing Emacs means terminating the Emacs program. To do this, type C-x C-c (save-buffers-kill-terminal). A two-character key sequence is used to make it harder to type by accident. If there are any modied le-visiting buers when you type C-x C-c, Emacs rst oers to save these buers. If you do not save them all, it asks for conrmation again, since the unsaved changes will be lost. Emacs also asks for conrmation if any subprocesses are still running, since killing Emacs will also kill the subprocesses (see Section 31.3 [Shell], page 401). C-x C-c behaves specially if you are using Emacs as a server. If you type it from a client frame, it closes the client connection. See Section 31.4 [Emacs Server], page 412. Emacs can, optionally, record certain session information when you kill it, such as the les you were visiting at the time. This information is then available the next time you start Emacs. See Section 31.8 [Saving Emacs Sessions], page 423. If the value of the variable confirm-kill-emacs is non-nil, C-x C-c assumes that its value is a predicate function, and calls that function. If the result of the function call is non-nil, the session is killed, otherwise Emacs continues to run. One convenient function to use as the value of confirm-kill-emacs is the function yes-or-no-p. The default value of confirm-kill-emacs is nil. To kill Emacs without being prompted about saving, type M-x kill-emacs. C-z runs the command suspend-frame. On a graphical display, this command minimizes (or iconies ) the selected Emacs frame, hiding it in a way that lets you bring it back later (exactly how this hiding occurs depends on the window system). On a text terminal, the C-z command suspends Emacs, stopping the program temporarily and returning control to the parent process (usually a shell); in most shells, you can resume Emacs after suspending it with the shell command %emacs. Text terminals usually listen for certain special characters whose meaning is to kill or suspend the program you are running. This terminal feature is turned o while you are in Emacs. The meanings of C-z and C-x C-c as keys in Emacs were
1

Setting inhibit-startup-screen in site-start.el doesnt work, because the startup screen is set up before reading site-start.el. See Section 33.4 [Init File], page 461, for information about site-start.el.

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inspired by the use of C-z and C-c on several operating systems as the characters for stopping or killing a program, but that is their only relationship with the operating system. You can customize these keys to run any commands of your choice (see Section 33.3.1 [Keymaps], page 452).

Chapter 4: Basic Editing Commands

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4 Basic Editing Commands


Here we explain the basics of how to enter text, make corrections, and save the text in a le. If this material is new to you, we suggest you rst run the Emacs learn-by-doing tutorial, by typing C-h t (help-with-tutorial).

4.1 Inserting Text


You can insert an ordinary graphic character (e.g., a, B, 3, and =) by typing the associated key. This adds the character to the buer at point. Insertion moves point forward, so that point remains just after the inserted text. See Section 1.1 [Point], page 6. To end a line and start a new one, type RET (newline). (The RET key may be labeled RETURN or ENTER on your keyboard, but we refer to it as RET in this manual.) This command inserts a newline character into the buer. If point is at the end of the line, the eect is to create a new blank line after it; if point is in the middle of a line, the line is split at that position. As we explain later in this manual, you can change the way Emacs handles text insertion by turning on minor modes. For instance, the minor mode called Auto Fill mode splits lines automatically when they get too long (see Section 22.5 [Filling], page 218). The minor mode called Overwrite mode causes inserted characters to replace (overwrite) existing text, instead of shoving it to the right. See Section 20.2 [Minor Modes], page 205. Only graphic characters can be inserted by typing the associated key; other keys act as editing commands and do not insert themselves. For instance, DEL runs the command delete-backward-char by default (some modes bind it to a dierent command); it does not insert a literal DEL character (ASCII character code 127). To insert a non-graphic character, or a character that your keyboard does not support, rst quote it by typing C-q (quoted-insert). There are two ways to use C-q: C-q followed by any non-graphic character (even C-g) inserts that character. For instance, C-q DEL inserts a literal DEL character. C-q followed by a sequence of octal digits inserts the character with the specied octal character code. You can use any number of octal digits; any non-digit terminates the sequence. If the terminating character is RET, that RET serves only to terminate the sequence. Any other non-digit terminates the sequence and then acts as normal inputthus, C-q 1 0 1 B inserts AB. The use of octal sequences is disabled in ordinary non-binary Overwrite mode, to give you a convenient way to insert a digit instead of overwriting with it. To use decimal or hexadecimal instead of octal, set the variable read-quoted-charradix to 10 or 16. If the radix is 16, the letters a to f serve as part of a character code, just like digits. Case is ignored. Instead of C-q, you can use the command C-x 8 RET (ucs-insert). This prompts for the Unicode name or code-point of a character, using the minibuer. If you enter a name, the command provides completion (see Section 5.3 [Completion],

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page 29). If you enter a code-point, it should be a hexadecimal number (which is the convention for Unicode). The command then inserts the corresponding character into the buer. For example, both of the following insert the innity sign (Unicode code-point U+221E): C-x 8 RET infinity RET C-x 8 RET 221e RET A numeric argument to either C-q or C-x 8 RET species how many copies of the character to insert (see Section 4.10 [Arguments], page 25).

4.2 Changing the Location of Point


To do more than insert characters, you have to know how to move point (see Section 1.1 [Point], page 6). The keyboard commands C-f, C-b, C-n, and C-p move point to the right, left, down, and up, respectively. You can also move point using the arrow keys present on most keyboards: RIGHT, LEFT, DOWN, and UP; however, many Emacs users nd that it is slower to use the arrow keys than the control keys, because you need to move your hand to the area of the keyboard where those keys are located. You can also click the left mouse button to move point to the position clicked. Emacs also provides a variety of additional keyboard commands that move point in more sophisticated ways. C-f RIGHT Move forward one character (forward-char). This command (right-char) behaves like C-f, with one exception: when editing right-to-left scripts such as Arabic, it instead moves backward if the current paragraph is a right-to-left paragraph. See Section 19.20 [Bidirectional Editing], page 202. Move backward one character (backward-char). This command (left-char) behaves like C-b, except it moves forward if the current paragraph is right-to-left. See Section 19.20 [Bidirectional Editing], page 202. Move down one screen line (next-line). This command attempts to keep the horizontal position unchanged, so if you start in the middle of one line, you move to the middle of the next. Move up one screen line (previous-line). This command preserves position within the line, like C-n. Move to the beginning of the line (move-beginning-of-line). Move to the end of the line (move-end-of-line). Move forward one word (forward-word).

C-b LEFT

C-n DOWN

C-p UP C-a HOME C-e END M-f

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This command (right-word) behaves like M-f, except it moves backward by one word if the current paragraph is right-to-left. See Section 19.20 [Bidirectional Editing], page 202. Move backward one word (backward-word). This command (left-word) behaves like M-f, except it moves forward by one word if the current paragraph is right-to-left. See Section 19.20 [Bidirectional Editing], page 202. Without moving the text on the screen, reposition point on the left margin of the center-most text line of the window; on subsequent consecutive invocations, move point to the left margin of the top-most line, the bottom-most line, and so forth, in cyclic order (move-towindow-line-top-bottom). A numeric argument says which screen line to place point on, counting downward from the top of the window (zero means the top line). A negative argument counts lines up from the bottom (1 means the bottom line). See Section 4.10 [Arguments], page 25, for more information on numeric arguments.

M-b C-LEFT M-LEFT

M-r

M-< M->

Move to the top of the buer (beginning-of-buffer). With numeric argument n, move to n/10 of the way from the top. Move to the end of the buer (end-of-buffer).

C-v PAGEDOWN NEXT Scroll the display one screen forward, and move point onscreen if necessary (scroll-up-command). See Section 11.1 [Scrolling], page 70. M-v PAGEUP PRIOR

Scroll one screen backward, and move point onscreen if necessary (scroll-down-command). See Section 11.1 [Scrolling], page 70.

M-x goto-char Read a number n and move point to buer position n. Position 1 is the beginning of the buer. M-g M-g M-g g Read a number n and move point to the beginning of line number n (goto-line). Line 1 is the beginning of the buer. If point is on or just after a number in the buer, that is the default for n. Just type RET in the minibuer to use it. You can also specify n by giving M-g M-g a numeric prex argument. See Section 16.1 [Select Buer], page 150, for the behavior of M-g M-g when you give it a plain prex argument.

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Use the current column of point as the semipermanent goal column for C-n and C-p (set-goal-column). When a semipermanent goal column is in eect, those commands always try to move to this column, or as close as possible to it, after moving vertically. The goal column remains in eect until canceled. Cancel the goal column. Henceforth, C-n and C-p try to preserve the horizontal position, as usual.

C-u C-x C-n

When a line of text in the buer is longer than the width of the window, Emacs usually displays it on two or more screen lines. For convenience, C-n and C-p move point by screen lines, as do the equivalent keys DOWN and UP. You can force these commands to move according to logical lines (i.e., according to the text lines in the buer) by setting the variable line-move-visual to nil; if a logical line occupies multiple screen lines, the cursor then skips over the additional screen lines. For details, see Section 4.8 [Continuation Lines], page 23. See Section 33.2 [Variables], page 443, for how to set variables such as line-move-visual. Unlike C-n and C-p, most of the Emacs commands that work on lines work on logical lines. For instance, C-a (move-beginning-of-line) and C-e (move-endof-line) respectively move to the beginning and end of the logical line. Whenever we encounter commands that work on screen lines, such as C-n and C-p, we will point these out. When line-move-visual is nil, you can also set the variable track-eol to a non-nil value. Then C-n and C-p, when starting at the end of the logical line, move to the end of the next logical line. Normally, track-eol is nil. C-n normally stops at the end of the buer when you use it on the last line in the buer. However, if you set the variable next-line-add-newlines to a non-nil value, C-n on the last line of a buer creates an additional line at the end and moves down into it.

4.3 Erasing Text


DEL BACKSPACE Delete the character before point, or the region if it is active (deletebackward-char). DELETE C-d C-k M-d M-DEL Delete the character after point, or the region if it is active (deleteforward-char). Delete the character after point (delete-char). Kill to the end of the line (kill-line). Kill forward to the end of the next word (kill-word). Kill back to the beginning of the previous word (backward-killword).

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The DEL (delete-backward-char) command removes the character before point, moving the cursor and the characters after it backwards. If point was at the beginning of a line, this deletes the preceding newline, joining this line to the previous one. If, however, the region is active, DEL instead deletes the text in the region. See Chapter 8 [Mark], page 47, for a description of the region. On most keyboards, DEL is labeled BACKSPACE, but we refer to it as DEL in this manual. (Do not confuse DEL with the DELETE key; we will discuss DELETE momentarily.) On some text terminals, Emacs may not recognize the DEL key properly. See Section 34.2.1 [DEL Does Not Delete], page 470, if you encounter this problem. The DELETE (delete-forward-char) command deletes in the opposite direction: it deletes the character after point, i.e. the character under the cursor. If point was at the end of a line, this joins the following line onto this one. Like DEL, it deletes the text in the region if the region is active (see Chapter 8 [Mark], page 47). C-d (delete-char) deletes the character after point, similar to DELETE, but regardless of whether the region is active. See Section 9.1.1 [Deletion], page 54, for more detailed information about the above deletion commands. C-k (kill-line) erases (kills) a line at a time. If you type C-k at the beginning or middle of a line, it kills all the text up to the end of the line. If you type C-k at the end of a line, it joins that line with the following line. See Chapter 9 [Killing], page 54, for more information about C-k and related commands.

4.4 Undoing Changes


C-/ C-x u C-_ Undo one entry of the undo recordsusually, one command worth (undo). The same.

Emacs records a list of changes made in the buer text, so you can undo recent changes. This is done using the undo command, which is bound to C-/ (as well as C-x u and C-_). Normally, this command undoes the last change, moving point back to where it was before the change. The undo command applies only to changes in the buer; you cant use it to undo cursor motion. Although each editing command usually makes a separate entry in the undo records, very simple commands may be grouped together. Sometimes, an entry may cover just part of a complex command. If you repeat C-/ (or its aliases), each repetition undoes another, earlier change, back to the limit of the undo information available. If all recorded changes have already been undone, the undo command displays an error message and does nothing.

Chapter 4: Basic Editing Commands To learn more about the undo command, see Section 13.1 [Undo], page 110.

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4.5 Files
Text that you insert in an Emacs buer lasts only as long as the Emacs session. To keep any text permanently, you must put it in a le. Suppose there is a le named test.emacs in your home directory. To begin editing this le in Emacs, type C-x C-f test.emacs RET Here the le name is given as an argument to the command C-x C-f (find-file). That command uses the minibuer to read the argument, and you type RET to terminate the argument (see Chapter 5 [Minibuer], page 27). Emacs obeys this command by visiting the le: it creates a buer, copies the contents of the le into the buer, and then displays the buer for editing. If you alter the text, you can save the new text in the le by typing C-x C-s (savebuffer). This copies the altered buer contents back into the le test.emacs, making them permanent. Until you save, the changed text exists only inside Emacs, and the le test.emacs is unaltered. To create a le, just visit it with C-x C-f as if it already existed. This creates an empty buer, in which you can insert the text you want to put in the le. Emacs actually creates the le the rst time you save this buer with C-x C-s. To learn more about using les in Emacs, see Chapter 15 [Files], page 124.

4.6 Help
If you forget what a key does, you can nd out by typing C-h k (describe-key), followed by the key of interest; for example, C-h k C-n tells you what C-n does. The prex key C-h stands for help. The key F1 serves as an alias for C-h. Apart from C-h k, there are many other help commands providing dierent kinds of help. See Chapter 7 [Help], page 38, for details.

4.7 Blank Lines


Here are special commands and techniques for inserting and deleting blank lines. C-o C-x C-o Insert a blank line after the cursor (open-line). Delete all but one of many consecutive blank lines (delete-blanklines).

We have seen how RET (newline) starts a new line of text. However, it may be easier to see what you are doing if you rst make a blank line and then insert the desired text into it. This is easy to do using the key C-o (open-line), which inserts a newline after point but leaves point in front of the newline. After C-o, type the text for the new line. You can make several blank lines by typing C-o several times, or by giving it a numeric argument specifying how many blank lines to make. See Section 4.10

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[Arguments], page 25, for how. If you have a ll prex, the C-o command inserts the ll prex on the new line, if typed at the beginning of a line. See Section 22.5.3 [Fill Prex], page 220. The easy way to get rid of extra blank lines is with the command C-x C-o (delete-blank-lines). If point lies within a run of several blank lines, C-x C-o deletes all but one of them. If point is on a single blank line, C-x C-o deletes it. If point is on a nonblank line, C-x C-o deletes all following blank lines, if any exists.

4.8 Continuation Lines


Sometimes, a line of text in the buera logical lineis too long to t in the window, and Emacs displays it as two or more screen lines. This is called line wrapping or continuation, and the long logical line is called a continued line. On a graphical display, Emacs indicates line wrapping with small bent arrows in the left and right window fringes. On a text terminal, Emacs indicates line wrapping by displaying a \ character at the right margin. Most commands that act on lines act on logical lines, not screen lines. For instance, C-k kills a logical line. As described earlier, C-n (next-line) and C-p (previous-line) are special exceptions: they move point down and up, respectively, by one screen line (see Section 4.2 [Moving Point], page 18). Emacs can optionally truncate long logical lines instead of continuing them. This means that every logical line occupies a single screen line; if it is longer than the width of the window, the rest of the line is not displayed. On a graphical display, a truncated line is indicated by a small straight arrow in the right fringe; on a text terminal, it is indicated by a $ character in the right margin. See Section 11.21 [Line Truncation], page 89. By default, continued lines are wrapped at the right window edge. Since the wrapping may occur in the middle of a word, continued lines can be dicult to read. The usual solution is to break your lines before they get too long, by inserting newlines. If you prefer, you can make Emacs insert a newline automatically when a line gets too long, by using Auto Fill mode. See Section 22.5 [Filling], page 218. Sometimes, you may need to edit les containing many long logical lines, and it may not be practical to break them all up by adding newlines. In that case, you can use Visual Line mode, which enables word wrapping : instead of wrapping long lines exactly at the right window edge, Emacs wraps them at the word boundaries (i.e., space or tab characters) nearest to the right window edge. Visual Line mode also redenes editing commands such as C-a, C-n, and C-k to operate on screen lines rather than logical lines. See Section 11.22 [Visual Line Mode], page 89.

4.9 Cursor Position Information


Here are commands to get information about the size and position of parts of the buer, and to count words and lines. M-x what-line Display the line number of point.

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M-x line-number-mode M-x column-number-mode Toggle automatic display of the current line number or column number. See Section 11.18 [Optional Mode Line], page 85. M-= Display the number of lines, words, and characters that are present in the region (count-words-region). See Chapter 8 [Mark], page 47, for information about the region.

M-x count-words Display the number of lines, words, and characters that are present in the buer. If the region is active (see Chapter 8 [Mark], page 47), display the numbers for the region instead. C-x = Display the character code of character after point, character position of point, and column of point (what-cursor-position).

M-x hl-line-mode Enable or disable highlighting of the current line. See Section 11.20 [Cursor Display], page 88. M-x size-indication-mode Toggle automatic display of the size of the buer. See Section 11.18 [Optional Mode Line], page 85. M-x what-line displays the current line number in the echo area. This command is usually redundant, because the current line number is shown in the mode line (see Section 1.3 [Mode Line], page 8). However, if you narrow the buer, the mode line shows the line number relative to the accessible portion (see Section 11.5 [Narrowing], page 74). By contrast, what-line displays both the line number relative to the narrowed region and the line number relative to the whole buer. M-= (count-words-region) displays a message reporting the number of lines, words, and characters in the region. M-x count-words displays a similar message for the entire buer, or for the region if the region is active. See Chapter 8 [Mark], page 47, for an explanation of the region. The command C-x = (what-cursor-position) shows information about the current cursor position and the buer contents at that position. It displays a line in the echo area that looks like this:
Char: c (99, #o143, #x63) point=28062 of 36168 (78%) column=53

After Char:, this shows the character in the buer at point. The text inside the parenthesis shows the corresponding decimal, octal and hex character codes; for more information about how C-x = displays character information, see Section 19.1 [International Chars], page 180. After point= is the position of point as a character count (the rst character in the buer is position 1, the second character is position 2, and so on). The number after that is the total number of characters in the buer, and the number in parenthesis expresses the position as a percentage of the total. After column= is the horizontal position of point, in columns counting from the left edge of the window.

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If the buer has been narrowed, making some of the text at the beginning and the end temporarily inaccessible, C-x = displays additional text describing the currently accessible range. For example, it might display this:
Char: C (67, #o103, #x43) point=252 of 889 (28%) <231-599> column=0

where the two extra numbers give the smallest and largest character position that point is allowed to assume. The characters between those two positions are the accessible ones. See Section 11.5 [Narrowing], page 74.

4.10 Numeric Arguments


In the terminology of mathematics and computing, argument means data provided to a function or operation. You can give any Emacs command a numeric argument (also called a prex argument). Some commands interpret the argument as a repetition count. For example, giving C-f an argument of ten causes it to move point forward by ten characters instead of one. With these commands, no argument is equivalent to an argument of one, and negative arguments cause them to move or act in the opposite direction. The easiest way to specify a numeric argument is to type a digit and/or a minus sign while holding down the META key. For example, M-5 C-n moves down ve lines. The keys M-1, M-2, and so on, as well as M--, are bound to commands (digit-argument and negative-argument) that set up an argument for the next command. Meta-- without digits normally means 1. If you enter more than one digit, you need not hold down the META key for the second and subsequent digits. Thus, to move down fty lines, type M-5 0 C-n Note that this does not insert ve copies of 0 and move down one line, as you might expectthe 0 is treated as part of the prex argument. (What if you do want to insert ve copies of 0? Type M-5 C-u 0. Here, C-u terminates the prex argument, so that the next keystroke begins the command that you want to execute. Note that this meaning of C-u applies only to this case. For the usual role of C-u, see below.) Instead of typing M-1, M-2, and so on, another way to specify a numeric argument is to type C-u (universal-argument) followed by some digits, or (for a negative argument) a minus sign followed by digits. A minus sign without digits normally means 1. C-u alone has the special meaning of four times: it multiplies the argument for the next command by four. C-u C-u multiplies it by sixteen. Thus, C-u C-u C-f moves forward sixteen characters. Other useful combinations are C-u C-n, C-u C-u C-n (move down a good fraction of a screen), C-u C-u C-o (make a lot of blank lines), and C-u C-k (kill four lines). You can use a numeric argument before a self-inserting character to insert multiple copies of it. This is straightforward when the character is not a digit; for example, C-u 6 4 a inserts 64 copies of the character a. But this does not work for inserting digits; C-u 6 4 1 species an argument of 641. You can separate the

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argument from the digit to insert with another C-u; for example, C-u 6 4 C-u 1 does insert 64 copies of the character 1. Some commands care whether there is an argument, but ignore its value. For example, the command M-q (fill-paragraph) lls text; with an argument, it justies the text as well. (See Section 22.5 [Filling], page 218, for more information on M-q.) For these commands, it is enough to the argument with a single C-u. Some commands use the value of the argument as a repeat count, but do something special when there is no argument. For example, the command C-k (killline) with argument n kills n lines, including their terminating newlines. But C-k with no argument is special: it kills the text up to the next newline, or, if point is right at the end of the line, it kills the newline itself. Thus, two C-k commands with no arguments can kill a nonblank line, just like C-k with an argument of one. (See Chapter 9 [Killing], page 54, for more information on C-k.) A few commands treat a plain C-u dierently from an ordinary argument. A few others may treat an argument of just a minus sign dierently from an argument of 1. These unusual cases are described when they come up; they exist to make an individual command more convenient, and they are documented in that commands documentation string. We use the term prex argument as well as numeric argument, to emphasize that you type these argument before the command, and to distinguish them from minibuer arguments that come after the command.

4.11 Repeating a Command


Many simple commands, such as those invoked with a single key or with M-x command-name RET, can be repeated by invoking them with a numeric argument that serves as a repeat count (see Section 4.10 [Arguments], page 25). However, if the command you want to repeat prompts for input, or uses a numeric argument in another way, that method wont work. The command C-x z (repeat) provides another way to repeat an Emacs command many times. This command repeats the previous Emacs command, whatever that was. Repeating a command uses the same arguments that were used before; it does not read new arguments each time. To repeat the command more than once, type additional zs: each z repeats the command one more time. Repetition ends when you type a character other than z, or press a mouse button. For example, suppose you type C-u 2 0 C-d to delete 20 characters. You can repeat that command (including its argument) three additional times, to delete a total of 80 characters, by typing C-x z z z. The rst C-x z repeats the command once, and each subsequent z repeats it once again.

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5 The Minibuer
The minibuer is where Emacs commands read complicated arguments, such as le names, buer names, Emacs command names, or Lisp expressions. We call it the minibuer because its a special-purpose buer with a small amount of screen space. You can use the usual Emacs editing commands in the minibuer to edit the argument text. When the minibuer is in use, it appears in the echo area, with a cursor. The minibuer starts with a prompt in a distinct color, usually ending with a colon. The prompt states what kind of input is expected, and how it will be used. The simplest way to enter a minibuer argument is to type the text, then RET to submit the argument and exit the minibuer. You can cancel the minibuer, and the command that wants the argument, by typing C-g. Sometimes, a default argument appears in the prompt, inside parentheses before the colon. This default will be used as the argument if you just type RET. For example, commands that read buer names usually show a buer name as the default; you can type RET to operate on that default buer. Since the minibuer appears in the echo area, it can conict with other uses of the echo area. If an error message or an informative message is emitted while the minibuer is active, the message hides the minibuer for a few seconds, or until you type something; then the minibuer comes back. While the minibuer is in use, keystrokes do not echo.

5.1 Minibuers for File Names


Commands such as C-x C-f (find-file) use the minibuer to read a le name argument (see Section 4.5 [Basic Files], page 22). When the minibuer is used to read a le name, it typically starts out with some initial text ending in a slash. This is the default directory. For example, it may start out like this: Find file: /u2/emacs/src/ Here, Find file: is the prompt and /u2/emacs/src/ is the default directory. If you now type buffer.c as input, that species the le /u2/emacs/src/buffer.c. See Section 15.1 [File Names], page 124, for information about the default directory. You can specify the parent directory with ..: /a/b/../foo.el is equivalent to /a/foo.el. Alternatively, you can use M-DEL to kill directory names backwards (see Section 22.1 [Words], page 214). To specify a le in a completely dierent directory, you can kill the entire default with C-a C-k (see Section 5.2 [Minibuer Edit], page 28). Alternatively, you can ignore the default, and enter an absolute le name starting with a slash or a tilde after the default directory. For example, you can specify /etc/termcap as follows: Find file: /u2/emacs/src//etc/termcap Emacs interprets a double slash as ignore everything before the second slash in the pair. In the example above, /u2/emacs/src/ is ignored, so the argument you supplied is /etc/termcap. The ignored part of the le name is dimmed if the

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terminal allows it. (To disable this dimming, turn o File Name Shadow mode with the command M-x file-name-shadow-mode.) Emacs interprets ~/ as your home directory. Thus, ~/foo/bar.txt species a le named bar.txt, inside a directory named foo, which is in turn located in your home directory. In addition, ~user-id / means the home directory of a user whose login name is user-id. Any leading directory name in front of the ~ is ignored: thus, /u2/emacs/~/foo/bar.txt is equivalent to ~/foo/bar.txt. On MS-Windows and MS-DOS systems, where a user doesnt always have a home directory, Emacs uses several alternatives. For MS-Windows, see Section G.5 [Windows HOME], page 538; for MS-DOS, see Section MS-DOS File Names in the digital version of the Emacs Manual . On these systems, the ~user-id / construct is supported only for the current user, i.e., only if user-id is the current users login name. To prevent Emacs from inserting the default directory when reading le names, change the variable insert-default-directory to nil. In that case, the minibuffer starts out empty. Nonetheless, relative le name arguments are still interpreted based on the same default directory. You can also enter remote le names in the minibuer. See Section 15.13 [Remote Files], page 145.

5.2 Editing in the Minibuer


The minibuer is an Emacs buer, albeit a peculiar one, and the usual Emacs commands are available for editing the argument text. (The prompt, however, is read-only, and cannot be changed.) Since RET in the minibuer submits the argument, you cant use it to insert a newline. You can do that with C-q C-j, which inserts a C-j control character, which is formally equivalent to a newline character (see Section 4.1 [Inserting Text], page 17). Alternatively, you can use the C-o (open-line) command (see Section 4.7 [Blank Lines], page 22). Inside a minibuer, the keys TAB, SPC, and ? are often bound to completion commands, which allow you to easily ll in the desired text without typing all of it. See Section 5.3 [Completion], page 29. As with RET, you can use C-q to insert a TAB, SPC, or ? character. For convenience, C-a (move-beginning-of-line) in a minibuer moves point to the beginning of the argument text, not the beginning of the prompt. For example, this allows you to erase the entire argument with C-a C-k. When the minibuer is active, the echo area is treated much like an ordinary Emacs window. For instance, you can switch to another window (with C-x o), edit text there, then return to the minibuer window to nish the argument. You can even kill text in another window, return to the minibuer window, and yank the text into the argument. There are some restrictions on the minibuer window, however: for instance, you cannot split it. See Chapter 17 [Windows], page 159. Normally, the minibuer window occupies a single screen line. However, if you add two or more lines worth of text into the minibuer, it expands automatically

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to accommodate the text. The variable resize-mini-windows controls the resizing of the minibuer. The default value is grow-only, which means the behavior we have just described. If the value is t, the minibuer window will also shrink automatically if you remove some lines of text from the minibuer, down to a minimum of one screen line. If the value is nil, the minibuer window never changes size automatically, but you can use the usual window-resizing commands on it (see Chapter 17 [Windows], page 159). The variable max-mini-window-height controls the maximum height for resizing the minibuer window. A oating-point number species a fraction of the frames height; an integer species the maximum number of lines; nil means do not resize the minibuer window automatically. The default value is 0.25. The C-M-v command in the minibuer scrolls the help text from commands that display help text of any sort in another window. You can also scroll the help text with M-PRIOR and M-NEXT (or, equivalently, M-PAGEUP and M-PAGEDOWN). This is especially useful with long lists of possible completions. See Section 17.3 [Other Window], page 160. Emacs normally disallows most commands that use the minibuer while the minibuer is active. To allow such commands in the minibuer, set the variable enable-recursive-minibuffers to t. When not active, the minibuer is in minibuffer-inactive-mode, and clicking Mouse-1 there shows the *Messages* buer. If you use a dedicated frame for minibuers, Emacs also recognizes certain keys there, for example n to make a new frame.

5.3 Completion
You can often use a feature called completion to help enter arguments. This means that after you type part of the argument, Emacs can ll in the rest, or some of it, based on what was typed so far. When completion is available, certain keys (usually TAB, RET, and SPC) are rebound in the minibuer to special completion commands (see Section 5.3.2 [Completion Commands], page 30). These commands attempt to complete the text in the minibuer, based on a set of completion alternatives provided by the command that requested the argument. You can usually type ? to see a list of completion alternatives. Although completion is usually done in the minibuer, the feature is sometimes available in ordinary buers too. See Section 23.8 [Symbol Completion], page 264. 5.3.1 Completion Example A simple example may help here. M-x uses the minibuer to read the name of a command, so completion works by matching the minibuer text against the names of existing Emacs commands. Suppose you wish to run the command auto-fillmode. You can do that by typing M-x auto-fill-mode RET, but it is easier to use completion.

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If you type M-x a u TAB, the TAB looks for completion alternatives (in this case, command names) that start with au. There are several, including autofill-mode and autoconf-mode, but they all begin with auto, so the au in the minibuer completes to auto. (More commands may be dened in your Emacs session. For example, if a command called authorize-me was dened, Emacs could only complete as far as aut.) If you type TAB again immediately, it cannot determine the next character; it could be -, a, or c. So it does not add any characters; instead, TAB displays a list of all possible completions in another window. Next, type -f. The minibuer now contains auto-f, and the only command name that starts with this is auto-fill-mode. If you now type TAB, completion lls in the rest of the argument auto-fill-mode into the minibuer. Hence, typing just a u TAB - f TAB allows you to enter auto-fill-mode. 5.3.2 Completion Commands Here is a list of the completion commands dened in the minibuer when completion is allowed. TAB Complete the text in the minibuer as much as possible; if unable to complete, display a list of possible completions (minibuffercomplete). Complete up to one word from the minibuer text before point (minibuffer-complete-word). This command is not available for arguments that often include spaces, such as le names. Submit the text in the minibuer as the argument, possibly completing rst (minibuffer-complete-and-exit). See Section 5.3.3 [Completion Exit], page 31. Display a list of completions (minibuffer-completion-help).

SPC

RET

TAB (minibuffer-complete) is the most fundamental completion command. It searches for all possible completions that match the existing minibuer text, and attempts to complete as much as it can. See Section 5.3.4 [Completion Styles], page 32, for how completion alternatives are chosen. SPC (minibuffer-complete-word) completes like TAB, but only up to the next hyphen or space. If you have auto-f in the minibuer and type SPC, it nds that the completion is auto-fill-mode, but it only inserts ill-, giving auto-fill-. Another SPC at this point completes all the way to auto-fill-mode. If TAB or SPC is unable to complete, it displays a list of matching completion alternatives (if there are any) in another window. You can display the same list with ? (minibuffer-completion-help). The following commands can be used with the completion list: Mouse-1 Mouse-2 Clicking mouse button 1 or 2 on a completion alternative chooses it (mouse-choose-completion).

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Typing M-v, while in the minibuer, selects the window showing the completion list (switch-to-completions). This paves the way for using the commands below. PAGEUP or PRIOR does the same. You can also select the window in other ways (see Chapter 17 [Windows], page 159). While in the completion list buer, this chooses the completion at point (choose-completion). While in the completion list buer, this moves point to the following completion alternative (next-completion). While in the completion list buer, this moves point to the previous completion alternative (previous-completion).

RET RIGHT LEFT

5.3.3 Completion Exit When a command reads an argument using the minibuer with completion, it also controls what happens when you type RET (minibuffer-complete-and-exit) to submit the argument. There are four types of behavior: Strict completion accepts only exact completion matches. Typing RET exits the minibuer only if the minibuer text is an exact match, or completes to one. Otherwise, Emacs refuses to exit the minibuer; instead it tries to complete, and if no completion can be done it momentarily displays [No match] after the minibuer text. (You can still leave the minibuer by typing C-g to cancel the command.) An example of a command that uses this behavior is M-x, since it is meaningless for it to accept a non-existent command name. Cautious completion is like strict completion, except RET exits only if the text is already an exact match. If the text completes to an exact match, RET performs that completion but does not exit yet; you must type a second RET to exit. Cautious completion is used for reading le names for les that must already exist, for example. Permissive completion allows any input; the completion candidates are just suggestions. Typing RET does not complete, it just submits the argument as you have entered it. Permissive completion with conrmation is like permissive completion, with an exception: if you typed TAB and this completed the text up to some intermediate state (i.e., one that is not yet an exact completion match), typing RET right afterward does not submit the argument. Instead, Emacs asks for conrmation by momentarily displaying [Confirm] after the text; type RET again to conrm and submit the text. This catches a common mistake, in which one types RET before realizing that TAB did not complete as far as desired.

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You can tweak the conrmation behavior by customizing the variable confirmnonexistent-file-or-buffer. The default value, after-completion, gives the behavior we have just described. If you change it to nil, Emacs does not ask for conrmation, falling back on permissive completion. If you change it to any other non-nil value, Emacs asks for conrmation whether or not the preceding command was TAB. This behavior is used by most commands that read le names, like C-x C-f, and commands that read buer names, like C-x b. 5.3.4 How Completion Alternatives Are Chosen Completion commands work by narrowing a large list of possible completion alternatives to a smaller subset that matches what you have typed in the minibuer. In Section 5.3.1 [Completion Example], page 29, we gave a simple example of such matching. The procedure of determining what constitutes a match is quite intricate. Emacs attempts to oer plausible completions under most circumstances. Emacs performs completion using one or more completion stylessets of criteria for matching minibuer text to completion alternatives. During completion, Emacs tries each completion style in turn. If a style yields one or more matches, that is used as the list of completion alternatives. If a style produces no matches, Emacs falls back on the next style. The list variable completion-styles species the completion styles to use. Each list element is the name of a completion style (a Lisp symbol). The default completion styles are (in order): basic A matching completion alternative must have the same beginning as the text in the minibuer before point. Furthermore, if there is any text in the minibuer after point, the rest of the completion alternative must contain that text as a substring.

partial-completion This aggressive completion style divides the minibuer text into words separated by hyphens or spaces, and completes each word separately. (For example, when completing command names, em-l-m completes to emacs-lisp-mode.) Furthermore, a * in the minibuer text is treated as a wildcardit matches any character at the corresponding position in the completion alternative. emacs22 This completion style is similar to basic, except that it ignores the text in the minibuer after point. It is so-named because it corresponds to the completion behavior in Emacs 22.

The following additional completion styles are also dened, and you can add them to completion-styles if you wish (see Chapter 33 [Customization], page 434): substring A matching completion alternative must contain the text in the minibuer before point, and the text in the minibuer after point, as substrings (in that same order).

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Thus, if the text in the minibuer is foobar, with point between foo and bar, that matches a foob barc , where a, b, and c can be any string including the empty string. initials This very aggressive completion style attempts to complete acronyms and initialisms. For example, when completing command names, it matches lch to list-command-history.

There is also a very simple completion style called emacs21. In this style, if the text in the minibuer is foobar, only matches starting with foobar are considered. You can use dierent completion styles in dierent situations, by setting the variable completion-category-overrides. For example, the default setting says to use only basic and substring completion for buer names. 5.3.5 Completion Options Case is signicant when completing case-sensitive arguments, such as command names. For example, when completing command names, AU does not complete to auto-fill-mode. Case dierences are ignored when completing arguments in which case does not matter. When completing le names, case dierences are ignored if the variable readfile-name-completion-ignore-case is non-nil. The default value is nil on systems that have case-sensitive le-names, such as GNU/Linux; it is non-nil on systems that have case-insensitive le-names, such as Microsoft Windows. When completing buer names, case dierences are ignored if the variable read-buffercompletion-ignore-case is non-nil; the default is nil. When completing le names, Emacs usually omits certain alternatives that are considered unlikely to be chosen, as determined by the list variable completionignored-extensions. Each element in the list should be a string; any le name ending in such a string is ignored as a completion alternative. Any element ending in a slash (/) represents a subdirectory name. The standard value of completionignored-extensions has several elements including ".o", ".elc", and "~". For example, if a directory contains foo.c and foo.elc, foo completes to foo.c. However, if all possible completions end in ignored strings, they are not ignored: in the previous example, foo.e completes to foo.elc. Emacs disregards completion-ignored-extensions when showing completion alternatives in the completion list. If completion-auto-help is set to nil, the completion commands never display the completion list buer; you must type ? to display the list. If the value is lazy, Emacs only shows the completion list buer on the second attempt to complete. In other words, if there is nothing to complete, the rst TAB echoes Next char not unique; the second TAB shows the completion list buer. If completion-cycle-threshold is non-nil, completion commands can cycle through completion alternatives. Normally, if there is more than one completion alternative for the text in the minibuer, a completion command completes up to the longest common substring. If you change completion-cycle-threshold to t, the completion command instead completes to the rst of those completion

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alternatives; each subsequent invocation of the completion command replaces that with the next completion alternative, in a cyclic manner. If you give completioncycle-threshold a numeric value n, completion commands switch to this cycling behavior only when there are fewer than n alternatives. Icomplete mode presents a constantly-updated display that tells you what completions are available for the text youve entered so far. The command to enable or disable this minor mode is M-x icomplete-mode.

5.4 Minibuer History


Every argument that you enter with the minibuer is saved in a minibuer history list so you can easily use it again later. You can use the following arguments to quickly fetch an earlier argument into the minibuer: M-p UP M-n DOWN Move to the previous item in the minibuer history, an earlier argument (previous-history-element). Move to the next item in the minibuer history (next-historyelement).

M-r regexp RET Move to an earlier item in the minibuer history that matches regexp (previous-matching-history-element). M-s regexp RET Move to a later item in the minibuer history that matches regexp (next-matching-history-element). While in the minibuer, M-p or UP (previous-history-element) moves through the minibuer history list, one item at a time. Each M-p fetches an earlier item from the history list into the minibuer, replacing its existing contents. Typing M-n or DOWN (next-history-element) moves through the minibuer history list in the opposite direction, fetching later entries into the minibuer. If you type M-n in the minibuer when there are no later entries in the minibuer history (e.g., if you havent previously typed M-p), Emacs tries fetching from a list of default arguments: values that you are likely to enter. You can think of this as moving through the future history list. If you edit the text inserted by the M-p or M-N minibuer history commands, this does not change its entry in the history list. However, the edited argument does go at the end of the history list when you submit it. You can use M-r (previous-matching-history-element) to search through older elements in the history list, and M-s (next-matching-history-element) to search through newer entries. Each of these commands asks for a regular expression as an argument, and fetches the rst matching entry into the minibuer. See Section 12.5 [Regexps], page 97, for an explanation of regular expressions. A numeric prex argument n means to fetch the nth matching entry. These commands

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are unusual, in that they use the minibuer to read the regular expression argument, even though they are invoked from the minibuer. An upper-case letter in the regular expression makes the search case-sensitive (see Section 12.8 [Search Case], page 103). You can also search through the history using an incremental search. See Section 12.1.7 [Isearch Minibuer], page 95. Emacs keeps separate history lists for several dierent kinds of arguments. For example, there is a list for le names, used by all the commands that read le names. Other history lists include buer names, command names (used by M-x), and command arguments (used by commands like query-replace). The variable history-length species the maximum length of a minibuer history list; adding a new element deletes the oldest element if the list gets too long. If the value is t, there is no maximum length. The variable history-delete-duplicates species whether to delete duplicates in history. If it is non-nil, adding a new element deletes from the list all other elements that are equal to it. The default is nil.

5.5 Repeating Minibuer Commands


Every command that uses the minibuer once is recorded on a special history list, the command history, together with the values of its arguments, so that you can repeat the entire command. In particular, every use of M-x is recorded there, since M-x uses the minibuer to read the command name. C-x ESC ESC Re-execute a recent minibuer command from the command history (repeat-complex-command). M-x list-command-history Display the entire command history, showing all the commands C-x ESC ESC can repeat, most recent rst. C-x ESC ESC re-executes a recent command that used the minibuer. With no argument, it repeats the last such command. A numeric argument species which command to repeat; 1 means the last one, 2 the previous, and so on. C-x ESC ESC works by turning the previous command into a Lisp expression and then entering a minibuer initialized with the text for that expression. Even if you dont know Lisp, it will probably be obvious which command is displayed for repetition. If you type just RET, that repeats the command unchanged. You can also change the command by editing the Lisp expression before you execute it. The repeated command is added to the front of the command history unless it is identical to the most recent item. Once inside the minibuer for C-x ESC ESC, you can use the usual minibuer history commands (see Section 5.4 [Minibuer History], page 34) to move through the history list. After nding the desired previous command, you can edit its expression as usual and then repeat it by typing RET. Incremental search does not, strictly speaking, use the minibuer. Therefore, although it behaves like a complex command, it normally does not appear in the

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history list for C-x ESC ESC. You can make incremental search commands appear in the history by setting isearch-resume-in-command-history to a non-nil value. See Section 12.1 [Incremental Search], page 91. The list of previous minibuer-using commands is stored as a Lisp list in the variable command-history. Each element is a Lisp expression that describes one command and its arguments. Lisp programs can re-execute a command by calling eval with the command-history element.

5.6 Entering passwords


Sometimes, you may need to enter a password into Emacs. For instance, when you tell Emacs to visit a le on another machine via a network protocol such as FTP, you often need to supply a password to gain access to the machine (see Section 15.13 [Remote Files], page 145). Entering a password is similar to using a minibuer. Emacs displays a prompt in the echo area (such as Password: ); after you type the required password, press RET to submit it. To prevent others from seeing your password, every character you type is displayed as a dot (.) instead of its usual form. Most of the features and commands associated with the minibuer can not be used when entering a password. There is no history or completion, and you cannot change windows or perform any other action with Emacs until you have submitted the password. While you are typing the password, you may press DEL to delete backwards, removing the last character entered. C-U deletes everything you have typed so far. C-g quits the password prompt (see Section 34.1 [Quitting], page 468). C-y inserts the current kill into the password (see Chapter 9 [Killing], page 54). You may type either RET or ESC to submit the password. Any other self-inserting character key inserts the associated character into the password, and all other input is ignored.

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6 Running Commands by Name


Every Emacs command has a name that you can use to run it. For convenience, many commands also have key bindings. You can run those commands by typing the keys, or run them by name. Most Emacs commands have no key bindings, so the only way to run them is by name. (See Section 33.3 [Key Bindings], page 452, for how to set up key bindings.) By convention, a command name consists of one or more words, separated by hyphens; for example, auto-fill-mode or manual-entry. Command names mostly use complete English words to make them easier to remember. To run a command by name, start with M-x, type the command name, then terminate it with RET. M-x uses the minibuer to read the command name. The string M-x appears at the beginning of the minibuer as a prompt to remind you to enter a command name to be run. RET exits the minibuer and runs the command. See Chapter 5 [Minibuer], page 27, for more information on the minibuer. You can use completion to enter the command name. For example, to invoke the command forward-char, you can type M-x forward-char RET or M-x forw TAB c RET Note that forward-char is the same command that you invoke with the key C-f. The existence of a key binding does not stop you from running the command by name. To cancel the M-x and not run a command, type C-g instead of entering the command name. This takes you back to command level. To pass a numeric argument to the command you are invoking with M-x, specify the numeric argument before M-x. The argument value appears in the prompt while the command name is being read, and nally M-x passes the argument to that command. When the command you run with M-x has a key binding, Emacs mentions this in the echo area after running the command. For example, if you type M-x forward-word, the message says that you can run the same command by typing M-f. You can turn o these messages by setting the variable suggest-key-bindings to nil. In this manual, when we speak of running a command by name, we often omit the RET that terminates the name. Thus we might say M-x auto-fill-mode rather than M-x auto-fill-mode RET. We mention the RET only for emphasis, such as when the command is followed by arguments. M-x works by running the command execute-extended-command, which is responsible for reading the name of another command and invoking it.

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7 Help
Emacs provides a wide variety of help commands, all accessible through the prex key C-h (or, equivalently, the function key F1). These help commands are described in the following sections. You can also type C-h C-h to view a list of help commands (help-for-help). You can scroll the list with SPC and DEL, then type the help command you want. To cancel, type C-g. Many help commands display their information in a special help buer. In this buer, you can type SPC and DEL to scroll and type RET to follow hyperlinks. See Section 7.4 [Help Mode], page 43. If you are looking for a certain feature, but dont know what it is called or where to look, we recommend three methods. First, try an apropos command, then try searching the manual index, then look in the FAQ and the package keywords. C-h a topics RET This searches for commands whose names match the argument topics. The argument can be a keyword, a list of keywords, or a regular expression (see Section 12.5 [Regexps], page 97). See Section 7.3 [Apropos], page 41. C-h i d m emacs RET i topic RET This searches for topic in the indices of the Emacs Info manual, displaying the rst match found. Press , to see subsequent matches. You can use a regular expression as topic. C-h i d m emacs RET s topic RET Similar, but searches the text of the manual rather than the indices. C-h C-f C-h p This displays the Emacs FAQ, using Info. This displays the available Emacs packages based on keywords. See Section 7.5 [Package Keywords], page 43.

C-h or F1 means help in various other contexts as well. For instance, you can type them after a prex key to view a list of the keys that can follow the prex key. (A few prex keys dont support C-h in this way, because they dene other meanings for it, but they all support F1 for help.) Here is a summary of help commands for accessing the built-in documentation. Most of these are described in more detail in the following sections. C-h a topics RET Display a list of commands whose names match topics (aproposcommand). C-h b C-h c key Display all active key bindings; minor mode bindings rst, then those of the major mode, then global bindings (describe-bindings). Show the name of the command that the key sequence key is bound to (describe-key-briefly). Here c stands for character. For more extensive information on key, use C-h k.

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C-h d topics RET Display the commands and variables whose documentation matches topics (apropos-documentation). C-h e Display the *Messages* buer (view-echo-area-messages).

C-h f function RET Display documentation on the Lisp function named function (describe-function). Since commands are Lisp functions, this works for commands too. C-h h C-h i C-h k key C-h l C-h m C-h n C-h p Display the HELLO le, which shows examples of various character sets. Run Info, the GNU documentation browser (info). The Emacs manual is available in Info. Display the name and documentation of the command that key runs (describe-key). Display a description of your last 300 keystrokes (view-lossage). Display documentation of the current major mode (describe-mode). Display news of recent Emacs changes (view-emacs-news). Find packages by topic keyword (finder-by-keyword). This lists packages using a package menu buer. See Chapter 32 [Packages], page 430.

C-h P package RET Display documentation about the package named package (describepackage). C-h r C-h s Display the Emacs manual in Info (info-emacs-manual). Display the contents of the current syntax table (describe-syntax). The syntax table says which characters are opening delimiters, which are parts of words, and so on. See Section Syntax Tables in The Emacs Lisp Reference Manual , for details. Enter the Emacs interactive tutorial (help-with-tutorial).

C-h t

C-h v var RET Display the documentation of the Lisp variable var (describevariable). C-h w command RET Show which keys run the command named command (where-is). C-h C coding RET Describe the coding system coding (describe-coding-system). C-h C RET Describe the coding systems currently in use.

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C-h F command RET Enter Info and go to the node that documents the Emacs command command (Info-goto-emacs-command-node). C-h I method RET Describe the input method method (describe-input-method). C-h K key Enter Info and go to the node that documents the key sequence key (Info-goto-emacs-key-command-node).

C-h L language-env RET Display information on the character sets, coding systems, and input methods used in language environment language-env (describelanguage-environment). C-h S symbol RET Display the Info documentation on symbol symbol according to the programming language you are editing (info-lookup-symbol). C-h . Display the help message for a special text area, if point is in one (display-local-help). (These include, for example, links in *Help* buers.)

7.1 Documentation for a Key


The help commands to get information about a key sequence are C-h c (describekey-briefly) and C-h k (describe-key). C-h c key displays in the echo area the name of the command that key is bound to. For example, C-h c C-f displays forward-char. C-h k key is similar but gives more information: it displays a help buer containing the commands documentation string, which describes exactly what the command does. C-h K key displays the section of the Emacs manual that describes the command corresponding to key. C-h c, C-h k and C-h K work for any sort of key sequences, including function keys, menus, and mouse events. For instance, after C-h k you can select a menu item from the menu bar, to view the documentation string of the command it runs. C-h w command RET lists the keys that are bound to command. It displays the list in the echo area. If it says the command is not on any key, that means you must use M-x to run it. C-h w runs the command where-is.

7.2 Help by Command or Variable Name


C-h f function RET (describe-function) displays the documentation of Lisp function function, in a window. Since commands are Lisp functions, you can use this method to view the documentation of any command whose name you know. For example, C-h f auto-fill-mode RET

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displays the documentation of auto-fill-mode. This is the only way to get the documentation of a command that is not bound to any key (one which you would normally run using M-x). C-h f is also useful for Lisp functions that you use in a Lisp program. For example, if you have just written the expression (make-vector len) and want to check that you are using make-vector properly, type C-h f make-vector RET. Because C-h f allows all function names, not just command names, you may nd that some of your favorite completion abbreviations that work in M-x dont work in C-h f. An abbreviation that is unique among command names may not be unique among all function names. If you type C-h f RET, it describes the function called by the innermost Lisp expression in the buer around point, provided that function name is a valid, dened Lisp function. (That name appears as the default while you enter the argument.) For example, if point is located following the text (make-vector (car x), the innermost list containing point is the one that starts with (make-vector, so C-h f RET will describe the function make-vector. C-h f is also useful just to verify that you spelled a function name correctly. If the minibuer prompt for C-h f shows the function name from the buer as the default, it means that name is dened as a Lisp function. Type C-g to cancel the C-h f command if you dont really want to view the documentation. C-h v (describe-variable) is like C-h f but describes Lisp variables instead of Lisp functions. Its default is the Lisp symbol around or before point, if that is the name of a dened Lisp variable. See Section 33.2 [Variables], page 443. Help buers that describe Emacs variables and functions normally have hyperlinks to the corresponding source code, if you have the source les installed (see Section 31.11 [Hyperlinking], page 426). To nd a commands documentation in a manual, use C-h F (Info-goto-emacscommand-node). This knows about various manuals, not just the Emacs manual, and nds the right one.

7.3 Apropos
The apropos commands answer questions like, What are the commands for working with les? More precisely, you specify an apropos pattern, which means either a word, a list of words, or a regular expression. Each of the following apropos commands reads an apropos pattern in the minibuer, searches for items that match the pattern, and displays the results in a dierent window. C-h a Search for commands (apropos-command). With a prex argument, search for noninteractive functions too.

M-x apropos Search for functions and variables. Both interactive functions (commands) and noninteractive functions can be found by this.

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M-x apropos-variable Search for user-customizable variables. With a prex argument, search for non-customizable variables too. M-x apropos-value Search for variables whose values match the specied pattern. With a prex argument, search also for functions with denitions matching the pattern, and Lisp symbols with properties matching the pattern. C-h d Search for functions and variables whose documentation strings match the specied pattern (apropos-documentation).

The simplest kind of apropos pattern is one word. Anything containing that word matches the pattern. Thus, to nd commands that work on les, type C-h a file RET. This displays a list of all command names that contain file, including copy-file, find-file, and so on. Each command name comes with a brief description and a list of keys you can currently invoke it with. In our example, it would say that you can invoke find-file by typing C-x C-f. For more information about a function denition, variable or symbol property listed in an apropos buer, you can click on it with Mouse-1 or Mouse-2, or move there and type RET. When you specify more than one word in the apropos pattern, a name must contain at least two of the words in order to match. Thus, if you are looking for commands to kill a chunk of text before point, you could try C-h a kill back backward behind before RET. The real command name kill-backward will match that; if there were a command kill-text-before, it would also match, since it contains two of the specied words. For even greater exibility, you can specify a regular expression (see Section 12.5 [Regexps], page 97). An apropos pattern is interpreted as a regular expression if it contains any of the regular expression special characters, ^$*+?.\[. Following the conventions for naming Emacs commands, here are some words that youll nd useful in apropos patterns. By using them in C-h a, you will also get a feel for the naming conventions. char, line, word, sentence, paragraph, region, page, sexp, list, defun, rect, buer, frame, window, face, le, dir, register, mode, beginning, end, forward, backward, next, previous, up, down, search, goto, kill, delete, mark, insert, yank, ll, indent, case, change, set, what, list, nd, view, describe, default. If the variable apropos-do-all is non-nil, the apropos commands always behave as if they had been given a prex argument. By default, all apropos commands except apropos-documentation list their results in alphabetical order. If the variable apropos-sort-by-scores is non-nil, these commands instead try to guess the relevance of each result, and display the most relevant ones rst. The apropos-documentation command lists its results in order of relevance by default; to list them in alphabetical order, change the variable apropos-documentation-sort-by-scores to nil.

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7.4 Help Mode Commands


Help buers provide the same commands as View mode (see Section 11.6 [View Mode], page 75); for instance, SPC scrolls forward, and DEL scrolls backward. A few special commands are also provided: RET TAB S-TAB Mouse-1 Mouse-2 C-c C-c C-c C-b Follow a cross reference at point (help-follow). Move point forward to the next hyperlink (forward-button). Move point back to the previous hyperlink (backward-button). Follow a hyperlink that you click on. Show all documentation about the symbol at point (help-followsymbol). Go back to the previous help topic (help-go-back).

When a function name, variable name, or face name (see Section 11.8 [Faces], page 75) appears in the documentation in the help buer, it is normally an underlined hyperlink. To view the associated documentation, move point there and type RET (help-follow), or click on the hyperlink with Mouse-1 or Mouse-2. Doing so replaces the contents of the help buer; to retrace your steps, type C-c C-b (help-go-back). A help buer can also contain hyperlinks to Info manuals, source code denitions, and URLs (web pages). The rst two are opened in Emacs, and the third using a web browser via the browse-url command (see Section 31.11.1 [BrowseURL], page 426). In a help buer, TAB (forward-button) moves point forward to the next hyperlink, while S-TAB (backward-button) point back to the previous hyperlink. These commands act cyclically; for instance, typing TAB at the last hyperlink moves back to the rst hyperlink. To view all documentation about any symbol in the text, move point to there and type C-c C-c (help-follow-symbol). This shows all available documentation about the symbolas a variable, function and/or face.

7.5 Keyword Search for Packages


Most optional features in Emacs are grouped into packages. Emacs contains several hundred built-in packages, and more can be installed over the network (see Chapter 32 [Packages], page 430). To make it easier to nd packages related to a topic, most packages are associated with one or more keywords based on what they do. Type C-h p (finder-bykeyword) to bring up a list of package keywords, together with a description of what the keywords mean. To view a list of packages for a given keyword, type RET on that line; this displays the list of packages in a Package Menu buer (see Section 32.1 [Package Menu], page 430).

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C-h P (describe-package) prompts for the name of a package, and displays a help buer describing the attributes of the package and the features that it implements.

7.6 Help for International Language Support


For information on a specic language environment (see Section 19.3 [Language Environments], page 183), type C-h L (describe-language-environment). This displays a help buer describing the languages supported by the language environment, and listing the associated character sets, coding systems, and input methods, as well as some sample text for that language environment. The command C-h h (view-hello-file) displays the le etc/HELLO, which demonstrates various character sets by showing how to say hello in many languages. The command C-h I (describe-input-method) describes an input method either a specied input method, or by default the input method currently in use. See Section 19.4 [Input Methods], page 185. The command C-h C (describe-coding-system) describes coding systems either a specied coding system, or the ones currently in use. See Section 19.6 [Coding Systems], page 188.

7.7 Other Help Commands


C-h i (info) runs the Info program, which browses structured documentation les. The entire Emacs manual is available within Info, along with many other manuals for the GNU system. Type h after entering Info to run a tutorial on using Info. With a numeric argument n, C-h i selects the Info buer *info*<n >. This is useful if you want to browse multiple Info manuals simultaneously. If you specify just C-u as the prex argument, C-h i prompts for the name of a documentation le, so you can browse a le which doesnt have an entry in the top-level Info menu. The help commands C-h F function RET and C-h K key , described above, enter Info and go straight to the documentation of function or key. When editing a program, if you have an Info version of the manual for the programming language, you can use C-h S (info-lookup-symbol) to nd an entry for a symbol (keyword, function or variable) in the proper manual. The details of how this command works depend on the major mode. If something surprising happens, and you are not sure what you typed, use C-h l (view-lossage). C-h l displays your last 300 input keystrokes. If you see commands that you dont know, you can use C-h c to nd out what they do. To review recent echo area messages, use C-h e (view-echo-area-messages). This displays the buer *Messages*, where those messages are kept. Each Emacs major mode typically redenes a few keys and makes other changes in how editing works. C-h m (describe-mode) displays documentation on the current major mode, which normally describes the commands and features that are changed in this mode.

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C-h b (describe-bindings) and C-h s (describe-syntax) show other information about the current environment within Emacs. C-h b displays a list of all the key bindings now in eect: rst the local bindings of the current minor modes, then the local bindings dened by the current major mode, and nally the global bindings (see Section 33.3 [Key Bindings], page 452). C-h s displays the contents of the syntax table, with explanations of each characters syntax (see Section Syntax Tables in The Emacs Lisp Reference Manual ). You can get a list of subcommands for a particular prex key by typing C-h (describe-prefix-bindings) after the prex key. (There are a few prex keys for which this does not workthose that provide their own bindings for C-h. One of these is ESC, because ESC C-h is actually C-M-h, which marks a defun.)

7.8 Help Files


Apart from the built-in documentation and manuals, Emacs contains several other les describing topics like copying conditions, release notes, instructions for debugging and reporting bugs, and so forth. You can use the following commands to view these les. Apart from C-h g, they all have the form C-h C-char . C-h C-c C-h C-d C-h C-e C-h C-f C-h g C-h C-m C-h C-n C-h C-o C-h C-p C-h C-t C-h C-w Display the rules under which you can copy and redistribute Emacs (describe-copying). Display help for debugging Emacs (view-emacs-debugging). Display information about where to get external packages (viewexternal-packages). Display the Emacs frequently-answered-questions list (view-emacsFAQ). Display information about the GNU Project (describe-gnuproject). Display information about ordering printed copies of Emacs manuals (view-order-manuals). Display the news le, which lists the new features in this version of Emacs (view-emacs-news). Display how to order or download the latest version of Emacs and other GNU software (describe-distribution). Display the list of known Emacs problems, sometimes with suggested workarounds (view-emacs-problems). Display the Emacs to-do list (view-emacs-todo). Display the full details on the complete absence of warranty for GNU Emacs (describe-no-warranty).

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7.9 Help on Active Text and Tooltips


In Emacs, stretches of active text (text that does something special in response to mouse clicks or RET) often have associated help text. This includes hyperlinks in Emacs buers, as well as parts of the mode line. On graphical displays, as well as some text terminals which support mouse tracking, moving the mouse over the active text displays the help text as a tooltip. See Section 18.17 [Tooltips], page 178. On terminals that dont support mouse-tracking, you can display the help text for active buer text at point by typing C-h . (display-local-help). This shows the help text in the echo area. To display help text automatically whenever it is available at point, set the variable help-at-pt-display-when-idle to t.

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8 The Mark and the Region


Many Emacs commands operate on an arbitrary contiguous part of the current buer. To specify the text for such a command to operate on, you set the mark at one end of it, and move point to the other end. The text between point and the mark is called the region. The region always extends between point and the mark, no matter which one comes earlier in the text; each time you move point, the region changes. Setting the mark at a position in the text also activates it. When the mark is active, we say also that the region is active; Emacs indicates its extent by highlighting the text within it, using the region face (see Section 33.1.5 [Face Customization], page 439). After certain non-motion commands, including any command that changes the text in the buer, Emacs automatically deactivates the mark; this turns o the highlighting. You can also explicitly deactivate the mark at any time, by typing C-g (see Section 34.1 [Quitting], page 468). The above default behavior is known as Transient Mark mode. Disabling Transient Mark mode switches Emacs to an alternative behavior, in which the region is usually not highlighted. See Section 8.7 [Disabled Transient Mark], page 52. Setting the mark in one buer has no eect on the marks in other buers. When you return to a buer with an active mark, the mark is at the same place as before. When multiple windows show the same buer, they can have dierent values of point, and thus dierent regions, but they all share one common mark position. See Chapter 17 [Windows], page 159. Ordinarily, only the selected window highlights its region; however, if the variable highlight-nonselected-windows is non-nil, each window highlights its own region.

8.1 Setting the Mark


Here are some commands for setting the mark: C-SPC C-@ C-x C-x Set the mark at point, and activate it (set-mark-command). The same. Set the mark at point, and activate it; then move point where the mark used to be (exchange-point-and-mark).

Drag-Mouse-1 Set point and the mark around the text you drag across. Mouse-3 Set the mark at point, then move point to where you click (mousesave-then-kill).

Shifted cursor motion keys Set the mark at point if the mark is inactive, then move point. See Section 8.6 [Shift Selection], page 52.

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The most common way to set the mark is with C-SPC (set-mark-command)1 . This sets the mark where point is, and activates it. You can then move point away, leaving the mark behind. For example, suppose you wish to convert part of the buer to upper case. To accomplish this, go to one end of the desired text, type C-SPC, and move point until the desired portion of text is highlighted. Now type C-x C-u (upcase-region). This converts the text in the region to upper case, and then deactivates the mark. Whenever the mark is active, you can deactivate it by typing C-g (see Section 34.1 [Quitting], page 468). Most commands that operate on the region also automatically deactivate the mark, like C-x C-u in the above example. Instead of setting the mark in order to operate on a region, you can also use it to remember a position in the buer (by typing C-SPC C-SPC), and later jump back there (by typing C-u C-SPC). See Section 8.4 [Mark Ring], page 51, for details. The command C-x C-x (exchange-point-and-mark) exchanges the positions of point and the mark. C-x C-x is useful when you are satised with the position of point but want to move the other end of the region (where the mark is). Using C-x C-x a second time, if necessary, puts the mark at the new position with point back at its original position. Normally, if the mark is inactive, this command rst reactivates the mark wherever it was last set, to ensure that the region is left highlighted. However, if you call it with a prex argument, it leaves the mark inactive and the region unhighlighted; you can use this to jump to the mark in a manner similar to C-u C-SPC. You can also set the mark with the mouse. If you press the left mouse button (down-mouse-1) and drag the mouse across a range of text, this sets the mark where you rst pressed the mouse button and puts point where you release it. Alternatively, clicking the right mouse button (mouse-3) sets the mark at point and then moves point to where you clicked. See Section 18.1 [Mouse Commands], page 165, for a more detailed description of these mouse commands. Finally, you can set the mark by holding down the shift key while typing certain cursor motion commands (such as S-RIGHT, S-C-f, S-C-n, etc.) This is called shift-selection. It sets the mark at point before moving point, but only if there is no active mark set via shift-selection. The mark set by mouse commands and by shiftselection behaves slightly dierently from the usual mark: any subsequent unshifted cursor motion command deactivates it automatically. For details, See Section 8.6 [Shift Selection], page 52. Many commands that insert text, such as C-y (yank), set the mark at the other end of the inserted text, without activating it. This lets you easily return to that position (see Section 8.4 [Mark Ring], page 51). You can tell that a command does this when it shows Mark set in the echo area.
1

There is no C-SPC character in ASCII; usually, typing C-SPC on a text terminal gives the character C-@. This key is also bound to set-mark-command, so unless you are unlucky enough to have a text terminal that behaves dierently, you might as well think of C-@ as C-SPC.

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Under X, every time the active region changes, Emacs saves the text in the region to the primary selection. This lets you insert that text into other X applications with mouse-2 clicks. See Section 9.3.2 [Primary Selection], page 60.

8.2 Commands to Mark Textual Objects


Here are commands for placing point and the mark around a textual object such as a word, list, paragraph or page: M-@ Set mark after end of next word (mark-word). This does not move point. Set mark after end of following balanced expression (mark-sexp). This does not move point. Move point to the beginning of the current paragraph, and set mark at the end (mark-paragraph). Move point to the beginning of the current defun, and set mark at the end (mark-defun). Move point to the beginning of the current page, and set mark at the end (mark-page). Move point to the beginning of the buer, and set mark at the end (mark-whole-buffer).

C-M-@

M-h

C-M-h

C-x C-p

C-x h

M-@ (mark-word) sets the mark at the end of the next word (see Section 22.1 [Words], page 214, for information about words). Repeated invocations of this command extend the region by advancing the mark one word at a time. As an exception, if the mark is active and located before point, M-@ moves the mark backwards from its current position one word at a time. This command also accepts a numeric argument n, which tells it to advance the mark by n words. A negative argument moves the mark back by n words. Similarly, C-M-@ (mark-sexp) puts the mark at the end of the next balanced expression (see Section 23.4.1 [Expressions], page 256). Repeated invocations extend the region to subsequent expressions, while positive or negative numeric arguments move the mark forward or backward by the specied number of expressions. The other commands in the above list set both point and mark, so as to delimit an object in the buer. M-h (mark-paragraph) marks paragraphs (see Section 22.3 [Paragraphs], page 216), C-M-h (mark-defun) marks top-level denitions (see Section 23.2.2 [Moving by Defuns], page 251), and C-x C-p (mark-page) marks pages (see Section 22.4 [Pages], page 217). Repeated invocations again play the same role, extending the region to consecutive objects; similarly, numeric arguments specify how many objects to move the mark by. C-x h (mark-whole-buffer) sets up the entire buer as the region, by putting point at the beginning and the mark at the end.

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8.3 Operating on the Region


Once you have a region, here are some of the ways you can operate on it: Kill it with C-w (see Chapter 9 [Killing], page 54). Copy it to the kill ring with M-w (see Section 9.2 [Yanking], page 57). Convert case with C-x C-l or C-x C-u (see Section 22.6 [Case], page 223). Undo changes within it using C-u C-/ (see Section 13.1 [Undo], page 110). Replace text within it using M-% (see Section 12.9.4 [Query Replace], page 106). Indent it with C-x TAB or C-M-\ (see Chapter 21 [Indentation], page 210). Fill it as text with M-x fill-region (see Section 22.5 [Filling], page 218). Check the spelling of words within it with M-$ (see Section 13.4 [Spelling], page 112). Evaluate it as Lisp code with M-x eval-region (see Section 24.9 [Lisp Eval], page 288). Save it in a register with C-x r s (see Chapter 10 [Registers], page 66). Save it in a buer or a le (see Section 9.4 [Accumulating Text], page 61). Some commands have a default behavior when the mark is inactive, but operate on the region if the mark is active. For example, M-$ (ispell-word) normally checks the spelling of the word at point, but it checks the text in the region if the mark is active (see Section 13.4 [Spelling], page 112). Normally, such commands use their default behavior if the region is empty (i.e., if mark and point are at the same position). If you want them to operate on the empty region, change the variable use-empty-active-region to t. As described in Section 4.3 [Erasing], page 20, the DEL (backward-deletechar) and DELETE (delete-forward-char) commands also act this way. If the mark is active, they delete the text in the region. (As an exception, if you supply a numeric argument n, where n is not one, these commands delete n characters regardless of whether the mark is active). If you change the variable deleteactive-region to nil, then these commands dont act dierently when the mark is active. If you change the value to kill, these commands kill the region instead of deleting it (see Chapter 9 [Killing], page 54). Other commands always operate on the region, and have no default behavior. Such commands usually have the word region in their names, like C-w (killregion) and C-x C-u (upcase-region). If the mark is inactive, they operate on the inactive regionthat is, on the text between point and the position at which the mark was last set (see Section 8.4 [Mark Ring], page 51). To disable this behavior, change the variable mark-even-if-inactive to nil. Then these commands will instead signal an error if the mark is inactive. By default, text insertion occurs normally even if the mark is activefor example, typing a inserts the character a, then deactivates the mark. If you enable Delete Selection mode, a minor mode, then inserting text while the mark is active causes the text in the region to be deleted rst. To toggle Delete Selection mode on or o, type M-x delete-selection-mode.

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8.4 The Mark Ring


Each buer remembers previous locations of the mark, in the mark ring. Commands that set the mark also push the old mark onto this ring. One of the uses of the mark ring is to remember spots that you may want to go back to. C-SPC C-SPC Set the mark, pushing it onto the mark ring, without activating it. C-u C-SPC Move point to where the mark was, and restore the mark from the ring of former marks.

The command C-SPC C-SPC is handy when you want to use the mark to remember a position to which you may wish to return. It pushes the current point onto the mark ring, without activating the mark (which would cause Emacs to highlight the region). This is actually two consecutive invocations of C-SPC (set-mark-command); the rst C-SPC sets the mark, and the second C-SPC deactivates it. (When Transient Mark mode is o, C-SPC C-SPC instead activates Transient Mark mode temporarily; see Section 8.7 [Disabled Transient Mark], page 52.) To return to a marked position, use set-mark-command with a prex argument: C-u C-SPC. This moves point to where the mark was, and deactivates the mark if it was active. Each subsequent C-u C-SPC jumps to a prior position stored in the mark ring. The positions you move through in this way are not lost; they go to the end of the ring. If you set set-mark-command-repeat-pop to non-nil, then immediately after you type C-u C-SPC, you can type C-SPC instead of C-u C-SPC to cycle through the mark ring. By default, set-mark-command-repeat-pop is nil. Each buer has its own mark ring. All editing commands use the current buers mark ring. In particular, C-u C-SPC always stays in the same buer. The variable mark-ring-max species the maximum number of entries to keep in the mark ring. This defaults to 16 entries. If that many entries exist and another one is pushed, the earliest one in the list is discarded. Repeating C-u C-SPC cycles through the positions currently in the ring. If you want to move back to the same place over and over, the mark ring may not be convenient enough. If so, you can record the position in a register for later retrieval (see Section 10.1 [Saving Positions in Registers], page 66).

8.5 The Global Mark Ring


In addition to the ordinary mark ring that belongs to each buer, Emacs has a single global mark ring. Each time you set a mark, this is recorded in the global mark ring in addition to the current buers own mark ring, if you have switched buers since the previous mark setting. Hence, the global mark ring records a sequence of buers that you have been in, and, for each buer, a place where you set the mark. The length of the global mark ring is controlled by global-mark-ring-max, and is 16 by default.

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The command C-x C-SPC (pop-global-mark) jumps to the buer and position of the latest entry in the global ring. It also rotates the ring, so that successive uses of C-x C-SPC take you to earlier buers and mark positions.

8.6 Shift Selection


If you hold down the shift key while typing a cursor motion command, this sets the mark before moving point, so that the region extends from the original position of point to its new position. This feature is referred to as shift-selection. It is similar to the way text is selected in other editors. The mark set via shift-selection behaves a little dierently from what we have described above. Firstly, in addition to the usual ways of deactivating the mark (such as changing the buer text or typing C-g), the mark is deactivated by any unshifted cursor motion command. Secondly, any subsequent shifted cursor motion command avoids setting the mark anew. Therefore, a series of shifted cursor motion commands will continuously adjust the region. Shift-selection only works if the shifted cursor motion key is not already bound to a separate command (see Chapter 33 [Customization], page 434). For example, if you bind S-C-f to another command, typing S-C-f runs that command instead of performing a shift-selected version of C-f (forward-char). A mark set via mouse commands behaves the same as a mark set via shiftselection (see Section 8.1 [Setting Mark], page 47). For example, if you specify a region by dragging the mouse, you can continue to extend the region using shifted cursor motion commands. In either case, any unshifted cursor motion command deactivates the mark. To turn o shift-selection, set shift-select-mode to nil. Doing so does not disable setting the mark via mouse commands.

8.7 Disabling Transient Mark Mode


The default behavior of the mark and region, in which setting the mark activates it and highlights the region, is called Transient Mark mode. This is a minor mode that is enabled by default. It can be toggled with M-x transient-mark-mode, or with the Active Region Highlighting menu item in the Options menu. Turning it o switches Emacs to an alternative mode of operation: Setting the mark, with commands like C-SPC or C-x C-x, does not highlight the region. Therefore, you cant tell by looking where the mark is located; you have to remember. The usual solution to this problem is to set the mark and then use it soon, before you forget where it is. You can also check where the mark is by using C-x C-x, which exchanges the positions of the point and the mark (see Section 8.1 [Setting Mark], page 47). Many commands that move point long distances, like M-< and C-s, rst set the mark where point was.

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Some commands, which ordinarily act on the region when the mark is active, no longer do so. For example, normally M-% (query-replace) performs replacements within the region, if the mark is active. When Transient Mark mode is o, it always operates from point to the end of the buer. Commands that act this way are identied in their own documentation. While Transient Mark mode is o, you can activate it temporarily using C-SPC C-SPC or C-u C-x C-x. C-SPC C-SPC Set the mark at point (like plain C-SPC) and enable Transient Mark mode just once, until the mark is deactivated. (This is not really a separate command; you are using the C-SPC command twice.) C-u C-x C-x Activate the mark and enable Transient Mark mode temporarily, until the mark is next deactivated. (This is the C-x C-x command, exchange-point-and-mark, with a prex argument.) These commands set or activate the mark, and enable Transient Mark mode only until the mark is deactivated. One reason you may want to use them is that some commands operate on the entire buer instead of the region when Transient Mark mode is o. Enabling Transient Mark mode momentarily gives you a way to use these commands on the region. When you specify a region with the mouse (see Section 8.1 [Setting Mark], page 47), or with shift-selection (see Section 8.6 [Shift Selection], page 52), this likewise activates Transient Mark mode temporarily and highlights the region.

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9 Killing and Moving Text


In Emacs, killing means erasing text and copying it into the kill ring. Yanking means bringing text from the kill ring back into the buer. (Some applications use the terms cutting and pasting for similar operations.) The kill ring is so-named because it can be visualized as a set of blocks of text arranged in a ring, which you can access in cyclic order. See Section 9.2.1 [Kill Ring], page 57. Killing and yanking are the most common way to move or copy text within Emacs. It is very versatile, because there are commands for killing many dierent types of syntactic units.

9.1 Deletion and Killing


Most commands which erase text from the buer save it in the kill ring. These are known as kill commands, and their names normally contain the word kill (e.g. kill-line). The kill ring stores several recent kills, not just the last one, so killing is a very safe operation: you dont have to worry much about losing text that you previously killed. The kill ring is shared by all buers, so text that is killed in one buer can be yanked into another buer. When you use C-/ (undo) to undo a kill command (see Section 13.1 [Undo], page 110), that brings the killed text back into the buer, but does not remove it from the kill ring. On graphical displays, killing text also copies it to the system clipboard. See Section 9.3 [Cut and Paste], page 59. Commands that erase text but do not save it in the kill ring are known as delete commands; their names usually contain the word delete. These include C-d (delete-char) and DEL (delete-backward-char), which delete only one character at a time, and those commands that delete only spaces or newlines. Commands that can erase signicant amounts of nontrivial data generally do a kill operation instead. You can also use the mouse to kill and yank. See Section 9.3 [Cut and Paste], page 59. 9.1.1 Deletion Deletion means erasing text and not saving it in the kill ring. For the most part, the Emacs commands that delete text are those that erase just one character or only whitespace. DEL BACKSPACE Delete the previous character, or the text in the region if it is active (delete-backward-char). DELETE C-d Delete the next character, or the text in the region if it is active (delete-forward-char). Delete the next character (delete-char).

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Delete spaces and tabs around point (delete-horizontal-space). Delete spaces and tabs around point, leaving one space (just-onespace). Delete blank lines around the current line (delete-blank-lines). Join two lines by deleting the intervening newline, along with any indentation following it (delete-indentation).

We have already described the basic deletion commands DEL (deletebackward-char), DELETE (delete-forward-char), and C-d (delete-char). See Section 4.3 [Erasing], page 20. With a numeric argument, they delete the specied number of characters. If the numeric argument is omitted or one, they delete all the text in the region if it is active (see Section 8.3 [Using Region], page 50). The other delete commands are those that delete only whitespace characters: spaces, tabs and newlines. M-\ (delete-horizontal-space) deletes all the spaces and tab characters before and after point. With a prex argument, this only deletes spaces and tab characters before point. M-SPC (just-one-space) does likewise but leaves a single space before point, regardless of the number of spaces that existed previously (even if there were none before). With a numeric argument n, it leaves n spaces before point if n is positive; if n is negative, it deletes newlines in addition to spaces and tabs, leaving a single space before point. C-x C-o (delete-blank-lines) deletes all blank lines after the current line. If the current line is blank, it deletes all blank lines preceding the current line as well (leaving one blank line, the current line). On a solitary blank line, it deletes that line. M-^ (delete-indentation) joins the current line and the previous line, by deleting a newline and all surrounding spaces, usually leaving a single space. See Chapter 21 [Indentation], page 210. 9.1.2 Killing by Lines C-k Kill rest of line or one or more lines (kill-line).

C-S-backspace Kill an entire line at once (kill-whole-line) The simplest kill command is C-k (kill-line). If used at the end of a line, it kills the line-ending newline character, merging the next line into the current one (thus, a blank line is entirely removed). Otherwise, C-k kills all the text from point up to the end of the line; if point was originally at the beginning of the line, this leaves the line blank. Spaces and tabs at the end of the line are ignored when deciding which case applies. As long as point is after the last visible character in the line, you can be sure that C-k will kill the newline. To kill an entire non-blank line, go to the beginning and type C-k twice. In this context, line means a logical text line, not a screen line (see Section 4.8 [Continuation Lines], page 23).

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When C-k is given a positive argument n, it kills n lines and the newlines that follow them (text on the current line before point is not killed). With a negative argument n, it kills n lines preceding the current line, together with the text on the current line before point. C-k with an argument of zero kills the text before point on the current line. If the variable kill-whole-line is non-nil, C-k at the very beginning of a line kills the entire line including the following newline. This variable is normally nil. C-S-backspace (kill-whole-line) kills a whole line including its newline, regardless of the position of point within the line. Note that many text terminals will prevent you from typing the key sequence C-S-backspace. 9.1.3 Other Kill Commands C-w M-w M-d M-DEL C-x DEL M-k C-M-k M-z char Kill the region (kill-region). Copy the region into the kill ring (kill-ring-save). Kill the next word (kill-word). See Section 22.1 [Words], page 214. Kill one word backwards (backward-kill-word). Kill back to beginning of sentence (backward-kill-sentence). See Section 22.2 [Sentences], page 215. Kill to the end of the sentence (kill-sentence). Kill the following balanced expression (kill-sexp). See Section 23.4.1 [Expressions], page 256. Kill through the next occurrence of char (zap-to-char).

One of the commonly-used kill commands is C-w (kill-region), which kills the text in the region (see Chapter 8 [Mark], page 47). Similarly, M-w (kill-ringsave) copies the text in the region into the kill ring without removing it from the buer. If the mark is inactive when you type C-w or M-w, the command acts on the text between point and where you last set the mark (see Section 8.3 [Using Region], page 50). Emacs also provides commands to kill specic syntactic units: words, with M-DEL and M-d (see Section 22.1 [Words], page 214); balanced expressions, with C-M-k (see Section 23.4.1 [Expressions], page 256); and sentences, with C-x DEL and M-k (see Section 22.2 [Sentences], page 215). The command M-z (zap-to-char) combines killing with searching: it reads a character and kills from point up to (and including) the next occurrence of that character in the buer. A numeric argument acts as a repeat count; a negative argument means to search backward and kill text before point. 9.1.4 Options for Killing Some specialized buers contain read-only text, which cannot be modied and therefore cannot be killed. The kill commands work specially in a read-only buer: they move over text and copy it to the kill ring, without actually deleting it from the

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buer. Normally, they also beep and display an error message when this happens. But if you set the variable kill-read-only-ok to a non-nil value, they just print a message in the echo area to explain why the text has not been erased. If you change the variable kill-do-not-save-duplicates to a non-nil value, identical subsequent kills yield a single kill-ring entry, without duplication.

9.2 Yanking
Yanking means reinserting text previously killed. The usual way to move or copy text is to kill it and then yank it elsewhere. C-y M-y C-M-w Yank the last kill into the buer, at point (yank). Replace the text just yanked with an earlier batch of killed text (yankpop). See Section 9.2.2 [Earlier Kills], page 58. Cause the following command, if it is a kill command, to append to the previous kill (append-next-kill). See Section 9.2.3 [Appending Kills], page 58.

The basic yanking command is C-y (yank). It inserts the most recent kill, leaving the cursor at the end of the inserted text. It also sets the mark at the beginning of the inserted text, without activating the mark; this lets you jump easily to that position, if you wish, with C-u C-SPC (see Section 8.4 [Mark Ring], page 51). With a plain prex argument (C-u C-y), the command instead leaves the cursor in front of the inserted text, and sets the mark at the end. Using any other prex argument species an earlier kill; e.g. C-u 4 C-y reinserts the fourth most recent kill. See Section 9.2.2 [Earlier Kills], page 58. On graphical displays, C-y rst checks if another application has placed any text in the system clipboard more recently than the last Emacs kill. If so, it inserts the text in the clipboard instead. Thus, Emacs eectively treats cut or copy clipboard operations performed in other applications like Emacs kills, except that they are not recorded in the kill ring. See Section 9.3 [Cut and Paste], page 59, for details. 9.2.1 The Kill Ring The kill ring is a list of blocks of text that were previously killed. There is only one kill ring, shared by all buers, so you can kill text in one buer and yank it in another buer. This is the usual way to move text from one buer to another. (There are several other methods: for instance, you could store the text in a register; see Chapter 10 [Registers], page 66. See Section 9.4 [Accumulating Text], page 61, for some other ways to move text around.) The maximum number of entries in the kill ring is controlled by the variable kill-ring-max. The default is 60. If you make a new kill when this limit has been reached, Emacs makes room by deleting the oldest entry in the kill ring. The actual contents of the kill ring are stored in a variable named kill-ring; you can view the entire contents of the kill ring with C-h v kill-ring.

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As explained in Section 9.2 [Yanking], page 57, you can use a numeric argument to C-y to yank text that is no longer the most recent kill. This is useful if you remember which kill ring entry you want. If you dont, you can use the M-y (yankpop) command to cycle through the possibilities. If the previous command was a yank command, M-y takes the text that was yanked and replaces it with the text from an earlier kill. So, to recover the text of the next-to-the-last kill, rst use C-y to yank the last kill, and then use M-y to replace it with the previous kill. M-y is allowed only after a C-y or another M-y. You can understand M-y in terms of a last yank pointer which points at an entry in the kill ring. Each time you kill, the last yank pointer moves to the newly made entry at the front of the ring. C-y yanks the entry which the last yank pointer points to. M-y moves the last yank pointer to a dierent entry, and the text in the buer changes to match. Enough M-y commands can move the pointer to any entry in the ring, so you can get any entry into the buer. Eventually the pointer reaches the end of the ring; the next M-y loops back around to the rst entry again. M-y moves the last yank pointer around the ring, but it does not change the order of the entries in the ring, which always runs from the most recent kill at the front to the oldest one still remembered. M-y can take a numeric argument, which tells it how many entries to advance the last yank pointer by. A negative argument moves the pointer toward the front of the ring; from the front of the ring, it moves around to the last entry and continues forward from there. Once the text you are looking for is brought into the buer, you can stop doing M-y commands and it will stay there. Its just a copy of the kill ring entry, so editing it in the buer does not change whats in the ring. As long as no new killing is done, the last yank pointer remains at the same place in the kill ring, so repeating C-y will yank another copy of the same previous kill. When you call C-y with a numeric argument, that also sets the last yank pointer to the entry that it yanks. 9.2.3 Appending Kills Normally, each kill command pushes a new entry onto the kill ring. However, two or more kill commands in a row combine their text into a single entry, so that a single C-y yanks all the text as a unit, just as it was before it was killed. Thus, if you want to yank text as a unit, you need not kill all of it with one command; you can keep killing line after line, or word after word, until you have killed it all, and you can still get it all back at once. Commands that kill forward from point add onto the end of the previous killed text. Commands that kill backward from point add text onto the beginning. This way, any sequence of mixed forward and backward kill commands puts all the killed text into one entry without rearrangement. Numeric arguments do not break the sequence of appending kills. For example, suppose the buer contains this text:

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This is a line of sample text. with point shown by . If you type M-d M-DEL M-d M-DEL, killing alternately forward and backward, you end up with a line of sample as one entry in the kill ring, and This is text. in the buer. (Note the double space between is and text, which you can clean up with M-SPC or M-q.) Another way to kill the same text is to move back two words with M-b M-b, then kill all four words forward with C-u M-d. This produces exactly the same results in the buer and in the kill ring. M-f M-f C-u M-DEL kills the same text, all going backward; once again, the result is the same. The text in the kill ring entry always has the same order that it had in the buer before you killed it. If a kill command is separated from the last kill command by other commands (not just numeric arguments), it starts a new entry on the kill ring. But you can force it to append by rst typing the command C-M-w (append-next-kill) right before it. The C-M-w tells the following command, if it is a kill command, to append the text it kills to the last killed text, instead of starting a new entry. With C-M-w, you can kill several separated pieces of text and accumulate them to be yanked back in one place. A kill command following M-w (kill-ring-save) does not append to the text that M-w copied into the kill ring.

9.3 Cut and Paste Operations on Graphical Displays


In most graphical desktop environments, you can transfer data (usually text) between dierent applications using a system facility called the clipboard. On X, two other similar facilities are available: the primary selection and the secondary selection. When Emacs is run on a graphical display, its kill and yank commands integrate with these facilities, so that you can easily transfer text between Emacs and other graphical applications. By default, Emacs uses UTF-8 as the coding system for inter-program text transfers. If you nd that the pasted text is not what you expected, you can specify another coding system by typing C-x RET x or C-x RET X. You can also request a dierent data type by customizing x-select-request-type. See Section 19.11 [Communication Coding], page 194. 9.3.1 Using the Clipboard The clipboard is the facility that most graphical applications use for cutting and pasting. When the clipboard exists, the kill and yank commands in Emacs make use of it. When you kill some text with a command such as C-w (kill-region), or copy it to the kill ring with a command such as M-w (kill-ring-save), that text is also put in the clipboard. When an Emacs kill command puts text in the clipboard, the existing clipboard contents are normally lost. Optionally, you can change save-interprogram-pastebefore-kill to t. Then Emacs will rst save the clipboard to its kill ring, prevent-

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ing you from losing the old clipboard dataat the risk of high memory consumption if that data turns out to be large. Yank commands, such as C-y (yank), also use the clipboard. If another application owns the clipboardi.e., if you cut or copied text there more recently than your last kill command in Emacsthen Emacs yanks from the clipboard instead of the kill ring. Normally, rotating the kill ring with M-y (yank-pop) does not alter the clipboard. However, if you change yank-pop-change-selection to t, then M-y saves the new yank to the clipboard. To prevent kill and yank commands from accessing the clipboard, change the variable x-select-enable-clipboard to nil. Many X desktop environments support a feature called the clipboard manager. If you exit Emacs while it is the current owner of the clipboard data, and there is a clipboard manager running, Emacs transfers the clipboard data to the clipboard manager so that it is not lost. In some circumstances, this may cause a delay when exiting Emacs; if you wish to prevent Emacs from transferring data to the clipboard manager, change the variable x-select-enable-clipboard-manager to nil. Prior to Emacs 24, the kill and yank commands used the primary selection (see Section 9.3.2 [Primary Selection], page 60), not the clipboard. If you prefer this behavior, change x-select-enable-clipboard to nil, x-select-enable-primary to t, and mouse-drag-copy-region to t. In this case, you can use the following commands to act explicitly on the clipboard: clipboard-kill-region kills the region and saves it to the clipboard; clipboard-kill-ring-save copies the region to the kill ring and saves it to the clipboard; and clipboard-yank yanks the contents of the clipboard at point. 9.3.2 Cut and Paste with Other Window Applications Under the X Window System, there exists a primary selection containing the last stretch of text selected in an X application (usually by dragging the mouse). Typically, this text can be inserted into other X applications by mouse-2 clicks. The primary selection is separate from the clipboard. Its contents are more fragile; they are overwritten each time you select text with the mouse, whereas the clipboard is only overwritten by explicit cut or copy commands. Under X, whenever the region is active (see Chapter 8 [Mark], page 47), the text in the region is saved in the primary selection. This applies regardless of whether the region was made by dragging or clicking the mouse (see Section 18.1 [Mouse Commands], page 165), or by keyboard commands (e.g. by typing C-SPC and moving point; see Section 8.1 [Setting Mark], page 47). If you change the variable select-active-regions to only, Emacs saves only temporarily active regions to the primary selection, i.e. those made with the mouse or with shift selection (see Section 8.6 [Shift Selection], page 52). If you change select-active-regions to nil, Emacs avoids saving active regions to the primary selection entirely.

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To insert the primary selection into an Emacs buer, click mouse-2 (mouseyank-primary) where you want to insert it. See Section 18.1 [Mouse Commands], page 165. MS-Windows provides no primary selection, but Emacs emulates it within a single Emacs session by storing the selected text internally. Therefore, all the features and commands related to the primary selection work on Windows as they do on X, for cutting and pasting within the same session, but not across Emacs sessions or with other applications. 9.3.3 Secondary Selection In addition to the primary selection, the X Window System provides a second similar facility known as the secondary selection. Nowadays, few X applications make use of the secondary selection, but you can access it using the following Emacs commands: M-Drag-Mouse-1 Set the secondary selection, with one end at the place where you press down the button, and the other end at the place where you release it (mouse-set-secondary). The selected text is highlighted, using the secondary-selection face, as you drag. The window scrolls automatically if you drag the mouse o the top or bottom of the window, just like mouse-set-region (see Section 18.1 [Mouse Commands], page 165). This command does not alter the kill ring. M-Mouse-1 M-Mouse-3 Set one endpoint for the secondary selection (mouse-startsecondary). Set the secondary selection, with one end at the position clicked and the other at the position specied with M-Mouse-1 (mousesecondary-save-then-kill). This also puts the selected text in the kill ring. A second M-Mouse-3 at the same place kills the secondary selection just made. Insert the secondary selection where you click, placing point at the end of the yanked text (mouse-yank-secondary).

M-Mouse-2

Double or triple clicking of M-Mouse-1 operates on words and lines, much like Mouse-1. If mouse-yank-at-point is non-nil, M-Mouse-2 yanks at point. Then it does not matter precisely where you click, or even which of the frames windows you click on. See Section 18.1 [Mouse Commands], page 165.

9.4 Accumulating Text


Usually we copy or move text by killing it and yanking it, but there are other convenient methods for copying one block of text in many places, or for copying many scattered blocks of text into one place. Here we describe the commands to accumulate scattered pieces of text into a buer or into a le.

Chapter 9: Killing and Moving Text M-x append-to-buffer Append region to the contents of a specied buer. M-x prepend-to-buffer Prepend region to the contents of a specied buer.

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M-x copy-to-buffer Copy region into a specied buer, deleting that buers old contents. M-x insert-buffer Insert the contents of a specied buer into current buer at point. M-x append-to-file Append region to the contents of a specied le, at the end. To accumulate text into a buer, use M-x append-to-buffer. This reads a buer name, then inserts a copy of the region into the buer specied. If you specify a nonexistent buer, append-to-buffer creates the buer. The text is inserted wherever point is in that buer. If you have been using the buer for editing, the copied text goes into the middle of the text of the buer, starting from wherever point happens to be at that moment. Point in that buer is left at the end of the copied text, so successive uses of append-to-buffer accumulate the text in the specied buer in the same order as they were copied. Strictly speaking, append-to-buffer does not always append to the text already in the buerit appends only if point in that buer is at the end. However, if append-to-buffer is the only command you use to alter a buer, then point is always at the end. M-x prepend-to-buffer is just like append-to-buffer except that point in the other buer is left before the copied text, so successive prependings add text in reverse order. M-x copy-to-buffer is similar, except that any existing text in the other buer is deleted, so the buer is left containing just the text newly copied into it. The command M-x insert-buffer can be used to retrieve the accumulated text from another buer. This prompts for the name of a buer, and inserts a copy of all the text in that buer into the current buer at point, leaving point at the beginning of the inserted text. It also adds the position of the end of the inserted text to the mark ring, without activating the mark. See Chapter 16 [Buers], page 150, for background information on buers. Instead of accumulating text in a buer, you can append text directly into a le with M-x append-to-file. This prompts for a lename, and adds the text of the region to the end of the specied le. The le is changed immediately on disk. You should use append-to-file only with les that are not being visited in Emacs. Using it on a le that you are editing in Emacs would change the le behind Emacss back, which can lead to losing some of your editing. Another way to move text around is to store it in a register. See Chapter 10 [Registers], page 66.

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9.5 Rectangles
Rectangle commands operate on rectangular areas of the text: all the characters between a certain pair of columns, in a certain range of lines. Emacs has commands to kill rectangles, yank killed rectangles, clear them out, ll them with blanks or text, or delete them. Rectangle commands are useful with text in multicolumn formats, and for changing text into or out of such formats. To specify a rectangle for a command to work on, set the mark at one corner and point at the opposite corner. The rectangle thus specied is called the regionrectangle. If point and the mark are in the same column, the region-rectangle is empty. If they are in the same line, the region-rectangle is one line high. The region-rectangle is controlled in much the same way as the region is controlled. But remember that a given combination of point and mark values can be interpreted either as a region or as a rectangle, depending on the command that uses them. C-x r k C-x r d C-x r y C-x r o Kill the text of the region-rectangle, saving its contents as the last killed rectangle (kill-rectangle). Delete the text of the region-rectangle (delete-rectangle). Yank the last killed rectangle with its upper left corner at point (yankrectangle). Insert blank space to ll the space of the region-rectangle (openrectangle). This pushes the previous contents of the region-rectangle to the right. Insert line numbers along the left edge of the region-rectangle (rectangle-number-lines). This pushes the previous contents of the region-rectangle to the right. Clear the region-rectangle by replacing all of its contents with spaces (clear-rectangle).

C-x r N

C-x r c

M-x delete-whitespace-rectangle Delete whitespace in each of the lines on the specied rectangle, starting from the left edge column of the rectangle. C-x r t string RET Replace rectangle contents with string on each line (stringrectangle). M-x string-insert-rectangle RET string RET Insert string on each line of the rectangle. The rectangle operations fall into two classes: commands to erase or insert rectangles, and commands to make blank rectangles. There are two ways to erase the text in a rectangle: C-x r d (delete-rectangle) to delete the text outright, or C-x r k (kill-rectangle) to remove the text and save it as the last killed rectangle. In both cases, erasing the region-rectangle is like

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erasing the specied text on each line of the rectangle; if there is any following text on the line, it moves backwards to ll the gap. Killing a rectangle is not killing in the usual sense; the rectangle is not stored in the kill ring, but in a special place that only records the most recent rectangle killed. This is because yanking a rectangle is so dierent from yanking linear text that dierent yank commands have to be used. Yank-popping is not dened for rectangles. To yank the last killed rectangle, type C-x r y (yank-rectangle). The rectangles rst line is inserted at point, the rectangles second line is inserted at the same horizontal position one line vertically below, and so on. The number of lines aected is determined by the height of the saved rectangle. For example, you can convert two single-column lists into a double-column list by killing one of the single-column lists as a rectangle, and then yanking it beside the other list. You can also copy rectangles into and out of registers with C-x r r r and C-x r i r . See Section 10.3 [Rectangle Registers], page 67. There are two commands you can use for making blank rectangles: C-x r c (clear-rectangle) blanks out existing text in the region-rectangle, and C-x r o (open-rectangle) inserts a blank rectangle. M-x delete-whitespace-rectangle deletes horizontal whitespace starting from a particular column. This applies to each of the lines in the rectangle, and the column is specied by the left edge of the rectangle. The right edge of the rectangle does not make any dierence to this command. The command C-x r N (rectangle-number-lines) inserts line numbers along the left edge of the region-rectangle. Normally, the numbering begins from 1 (for the rst line of the rectangle). With a prex argument, the command prompts for a number to begin from, and for a format string with which to print the numbers (see Section Formatting Strings in The Emacs Lisp Reference Manual ). The command C-x r t (string-rectangle) replaces the contents of a regionrectangle with a string on each line. The strings width need not be the same as the width of the rectangle. If the strings width is less, the text after the rectangle shifts left; if the string is wider than the rectangle, the text after the rectangle shifts right. The command M-x string-insert-rectangle is similar to string-rectangle, but inserts the string on each line, shifting the original text to the right.

9.6 CUA Bindings


The command M-x cua-mode sets up key bindings that are compatible with the Common User Access (CUA) system used in many other applications. When CUA mode is enabled, the keys C-x, C-c, C-v, and C-z invoke commands that cut (kill), copy, paste (yank), and undo respectively. The C-x and C-c keys perform cut and copy only if the region is active. Otherwise, they still act as prex keys, so that standard Emacs commands like C-x C-c still work. Note that this

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means the variable mark-even-if-inactive has no eect for C-x and C-c (see Section 8.3 [Using Region], page 50). To enter an Emacs command like C-x C-f while the mark is active, use one of the following methods: either hold Shift together with the prex key, e.g. S-C-x C-f, or quickly type the prex key twice, e.g. C-x C-x C-f. To disable the overriding of standard Emacs binding by CUA mode, while retaining the other features of CUA mode described below, set the variable cuaenable-cua-keys to nil. In CUA mode, typed text replaces the active region as in Delete-Selection mode (see Section 18.1 [Mouse Commands], page 165). CUA mode provides enhanced rectangle support with visible rectangle highlighting. Use C-RET to start a rectangle, extend it using the movement commands, and cut or copy it using C-x or C-c. RET moves the cursor to the next (clockwise) corner of the rectangle, so you can easily expand it in any direction. Normal text you type is inserted to the left or right of each line in the rectangle (on the same side as the cursor). With CUA you can easily copy text and rectangles into and out of registers by providing a one-digit numeric prex to the kill, copy, and yank commands, e.g. C-1 C-c copies the region into register 1, and C-2 C-v yanks the contents of register 2. CUA mode also has a global mark feature which allows easy moving and copying of text between buers. Use C-S-SPC to toggle the global mark on and o. When the global mark is on, all text that you kill or copy is automatically inserted at the global mark, and text you type is inserted at the global mark rather than at the current position. For example, to copy words from various buers into a word list in a given buer, set the global mark in the target buer, then navigate to each of the words you want in the list, mark it (e.g. with S-M-f), copy it to the list with C-c or M-w, and insert a newline after the word in the target list by pressing RET.

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10 Registers
Emacs registers are compartments where you can save text, rectangles, positions, and other things for later use. Once you save text or a rectangle in a register, you can copy it into the buer once, or many times; once you save a position in a register, you can jump back to that position once, or many times. Each register has a name that consists of a single character, which we will denote by r ; r can be a letter (such as a) or a number (such as 1); case matters, so register a is not the same as register A. A register can store a position, a piece of text, a rectangle, a number, a window conguration, or a le name, but only one thing at any given time. Whatever you store in a register remains there until you store something else in that register. To see what register r contains, use M-x view-register: M-x view-register RET r Display a description of what register r contains. Bookmarks record les and positions in them, so you can return to those positions when you look at the le again. Bookmarks are similar in spirit to registers, so they are also documented in this chapter.

10.1 Saving Positions in Registers


C-x r SPC r Record the position of point and the current buer in register r (point-to-register). C-x r j r Jump to the position and buer saved in register r (jump-toregister).

Typing C-x r SPC (point-to-register), followed by a character r , saves both the position of point and the current buer in register r. The register retains this information until you store something else in it. The command C-x r j r switches to the buer recorded in register r, and moves point to the recorded position. The contents of the register are not changed, so you can jump to the saved position any number of times. If you use C-x r j to go to a saved position, but the buer it was saved from has been killed, C-x r j tries to create the buer again by visiting the same le. Of course, this works only for buers that were visiting les.

10.2 Saving Text in Registers


When you want to insert a copy of the same piece of text several times, it may be inconvenient to yank it from the kill ring, since each subsequent kill moves that entry further down the ring. An alternative is to store the text in a register and later retrieve it. C-x r s r Copy region into register r (copy-to-register).

Chapter 10: Registers C-x r i r Insert text from register r (insert-register).

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M-x append-to-register RET r Append region to text in register r. M-x prepend-to-register RET r Prepend region to text in register r. C-x r s r stores a copy of the text of the region into the register named r. If the mark is inactive, Emacs rst reactivates the mark where it was last set. The mark is deactivated at the end of this command. See Chapter 8 [Mark], page 47. C-u C-x r s r , the same command with a prex argument, copies the text into register r and deletes the text from the buer as well; you can think of this as moving the region text into the register. M-x append-to-register RET r appends the copy of the text in the region to the text already stored in the register named r. If invoked with a prex argument, it deletes the region after appending it to the register. The command prependto-register is similar, except that it prepends the region text to the text in the register instead of appending it. C-x r i r inserts in the buer the text from register r. Normally it leaves point before the text and sets the mark after, without activating it. With a numeric argument, it instead puts point after the text and the mark before.

10.3 Saving Rectangles in Registers


A register can contain a rectangle instead of linear text. See Section 9.5 [Rectangles], page 63, for basic information on how to specify a rectangle in the buer. C-x r r r C-x r i r Copy the region-rectangle into register r (copy-rectangle-toregister). With numeric argument, delete it as well. Insert the rectangle stored in register r (if it contains a rectangle) (insert-register).

The C-x r i r (insert-register) command, previously documented in Section 10.2 [Text Registers], page 66, inserts a rectangle rather than a text string, if the register contains a rectangle.

10.4 Saving Window Congurations in Registers


You can save the window conguration of the selected frame in a register, or even the conguration of all windows in all frames, and restore the conguration later. See Chapter 17 [Windows], page 159, for information about window congurations. C-x r w r C-x r f r Save the state of the selected frames windows in register r (windowconfiguration-to-register). Save the state of all frames, including all their windows, in register r (frame-configuration-to-register).

Use C-x r j r to restore a window or frame conguration. This is the same command used to restore a cursor position. When you restore a frame conguration,

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any existing frames not included in the conguration become invisible. If you wish to delete these frames instead, use C-u C-x r j r .

10.5 Keeping Numbers in Registers


There are commands to store a number in a register, to insert the number in the buer in decimal, and to increment it. These commands can be useful in keyboard macros (see Chapter 14 [Keyboard Macros], page 116). C-u number C-x r n r Store number into register r (number-to-register). C-u number C-x r + r Increment the number in register r by number (increment-register). C-x r i r Insert the number from register r into the buer.

C-x r i is the same command used to insert any other sort of register contents into the buer. C-x r + with no numeric argument increments the register value by 1; C-x r n with no numeric argument stores zero in the register.

10.6 Keeping File Names in Registers


If you visit certain le names frequently, you can visit them more conveniently if you put their names in registers. Heres the Lisp code used to put a le name in a register:
(set-register ?r (file . name ))

For example,
(set-register ?z (file . "/gd/gnu/emacs/19.0/src/ChangeLog"))

puts the le name shown in register z. To visit the le whose name is in register r, type C-x r j r . (This is the same command used to jump to a position or restore a frame conguration.)

10.7 Bookmarks
Bookmarks are somewhat like registers in that they record positions you can jump to. Unlike registers, they have long names, and they persist automatically from one Emacs session to the next. The prototypical use of bookmarks is to record where you were reading in various les. C-x r m RET Set the bookmark for the visited le, at point. C-x r m bookmark RET Set the bookmark named bookmark at point (bookmark-set). C-x r b bookmark RET Jump to the bookmark named bookmark (bookmark-jump). C-x r l List all bookmarks (list-bookmarks).

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The prototypical use for bookmarks is to record one current position in each of several les. So the command C-x r m, which sets a bookmark, uses the visited le name as the default for the bookmark name. If you name each bookmark after the le it points to, then you can conveniently revisit any of those les with C-x r b, and move to the position of the bookmark at the same time. To display a list of all your bookmarks in a separate buer, type C-x r l (listbookmarks). If you switch to that buer, you can use it to edit your bookmark denitions or annotate the bookmarks. Type C-h m in the bookmark buer for more information about its special editing commands. When you kill Emacs, Emacs saves your bookmarks, if you have changed any bookmark values. You can also save the bookmarks at any time with the M-x bookmark-save command. Bookmarks are saved to the le ~/.emacs.d/bookmarks (for compatibility with older versions of Emacs, if you have a le named ~/.emacs.bmk, that is used instead). The bookmark commands load your default bookmark le automatically. This saving and loading is how bookmarks persist from one Emacs session to the next. If you set the variable bookmark-save-flag to 1, each command that sets a bookmark will also save your bookmarks; this way, you dont lose any bookmark values even if Emacs crashes. The value, if a number, says how many bookmark modications should go by between saving. If you set this variable to nil, Emacs only saves bookmarks if you explicitly use M-x bookmark-save. Bookmark position values are saved with surrounding context, so that bookmark-jump can nd the proper position even if the le is modied slightly. The variable bookmark-search-size says how many characters of context to record on each side of the bookmarks position. Here are some additional commands for working with bookmarks: M-x bookmark-load RET filename RET Load a le named lename that contains a list of bookmark values. You can use this command, as well as bookmark-write, to work with other les of bookmark values in addition to your default bookmark le. M-x bookmark-write RET filename RET Save all the current bookmark values in the le lename. M-x bookmark-delete RET bookmark RET Delete the bookmark named bookmark. M-x bookmark-insert-location RET bookmark RET Insert in the buer the name of the le that bookmark bookmark points to. M-x bookmark-insert RET bookmark RET Insert in the buer the contents of the le that bookmark bookmark points to.

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11 Controlling the Display


Since only part of a large buer ts in the window, Emacs has to show only a part of it. This chapter describes commands and variables that let you specify which part of the text you want to see, and how the text is displayed.

11.1 Scrolling
If a window is too small to display all the text in its buer, it displays only a portion of it. Scrolling commands change which portion of the buer is displayed. Scrolling forward or up advances the portion of the buer displayed in the window; equivalently, it moves the buer text upwards relative to the window. Scrolling backward or down displays an earlier portion of the buer, and moves the text downwards relative to the window. In Emacs, scrolling up or down refers to the direction that the text moves in the window, not the direction that the window moves relative to the text. This terminology was adopted by Emacs before the modern meaning of scrolling up and scrolling down became widespread. Hence, the strange result that PAGEDOWN scrolls up in the Emacs sense. The portion of a buer displayed in a window always contains point. If you move point past the bottom or top of the window, scrolling occurs automatically to bring it back onscreen (see Section 11.3 [Auto Scrolling], page 72). You can also scroll explicitly with these commands: C-v NEXT PAGEDOWN Scroll forward by nearly a full window (scroll-up-command). M-v PRIOR PAGEUP

Scroll backward (scroll-down-command).

C-v (scroll-up-command) scrolls forward by nearly the whole window height. The eect is to take the two lines at the bottom of the window and put them at the top, followed by lines that were not previously visible. If point was in the text that scrolled o the top, it ends up on the windows new topmost line. The NEXT (or PAGEDOWN) key is equivalent to C-v. M-v (scroll-down-command) scrolls backward in a similar way. The PRIOR (or PAGEUP) key is equivalent to M-v. The number of lines of overlap left by these scroll commands is controlled by the variable next-screen-context-lines, whose default value is 2. You can supply the commands with a numeric prex argument, n, to scroll by n lines; Emacs attempts to leave point unchanged, so that the text and point move up or down together. C-v with a negative argument is like M-v and vice versa. By default, these commands signal an error (by beeping or ashing the screen) if no more scrolling is possible, because the window has reached the beginning or

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end of the buer. If you change the variable scroll-error-top-bottom to t, the command moves point to the farthest possible position. If point is already there, the command signals an error. Some users like scroll commands to keep point at the same screen position, so that scrolling back to the same screen conveniently returns point to its original position. You can enable this behavior via the variable scroll-preserve-screenposition. If the value is t, Emacs adjusts point to keep the cursor at the same screen position whenever a scroll command moves it o-window, rather than moving it to the topmost or bottommost line. With any other non-nil value, Emacs adjusts point this way even if the scroll command leaves point in the window. This variable aects all the scroll commands documented in this section, as well as scrolling with the mouse wheel (see Section 18.1 [Mouse Commands], page 165); in general, it aects any command that has a non-nil scroll-command property. See Section Property Lists in The Emacs Lisp Reference Manual . The commands M-x scroll-up and M-x scroll-down behave similarly to scroll-up-command and scroll-down-command, except they do not obey scroll-error-top-bottom. Prior to Emacs 24, these were the default commands for scrolling up and down. The commands M-x scroll-up-line and M-x scroll-down-line scroll the current window by one line at a time. If you intend to use any of these commands, you might want to give them key bindings (see Section 33.3.6 [Init Rebinding], page 455).

11.2 Recentering
C-l Scroll the selected window so the current line is the center-most text line; on subsequent consecutive invocations, make the current line the top line, the bottom line, and so on in cyclic order. Possibly redisplay the screen too (recenter-top-bottom).

M-x recenter Scroll the selected window so the current line is the center-most text line. Possibly redisplay the screen too. C-M-l Scroll heuristically to bring useful information onto the screen (reposition-window).

The C-l (recenter-top-bottom) command recenters the selected window, scrolling it so that the current screen line is exactly in the center of the window, or as close to the center as possible. Typing C-l twice in a row (C-l C-l) scrolls the window so that point is on the topmost screen line. Typing a third C-l scrolls the window so that point is on the bottom-most screen line. Each successive C-l cycles through these three positions. You can change the cycling order by customizing the list variable recenterpositions. Each list element should be the symbol top, middle, or bottom, or a number; an integer means to move the line to the specied screen line, while a oating-point number between 0.0 and 1.0 species a percentage of the screen space from the top of the window. The default, (middle top bottom), is the cycling order

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described above. Furthermore, if you change the variable scroll-margin to a nonzero value n, C-l always leaves at least n screen lines between point and the top or bottom of the window (see Section 11.3 [Auto Scrolling], page 72). You can also give C-l a prex argument. A plain prex argument, C-u C-l, simply recenters point. A positive argument n puts point n lines down from the top of the window. An argument of zero puts point on the topmost line. A negative argument -n puts point n lines from the bottom of the window. When given an argument, C-l does not clear the screen or cycle through dierent screen positions. If the variable recenter-redisplay has a non-nil value, each invocation of C-l also clears and redisplays the screen; the special value tty (the default) says to do this on text-terminal frames only. Redisplaying is useful in case the screen becomes garbled for any reason (see Section 34.2.3 [Screen Garbled], page 470). The more primitive command M-x recenter behaves like recenter-topbottom, but does not cycle among screen positions. C-M-l (reposition-window) scrolls the current window heuristically in a way designed to get useful information onto the screen. For example, in a Lisp le, this command tries to get the entire current defun onto the screen if possible.

11.3 Automatic Scrolling


Emacs performs automatic scrolling when point moves out of the visible portion of the text. Normally, this centers point vertically within the window. However, if you set scroll-conservatively to a small number n, then if you move point just a little o the screen (less than n lines), Emacs scrolls the text just far enough to bring point back on screen. By default, scroll-conservatively is 0. If you set scrollconservatively to a large number (larger than 100), Emacs will never center point as result of scrolling, even if point moves far away from the text previously displayed in the window. With such a large value, Emacs will always scroll text just enough for bringing point into view, so point will end up at the top or bottom of the window, depending on the scroll direction. The variable scroll-step determines how many lines to scroll the window when point moves o the screen. If moving by that number of lines fails to bring point back into view, point is centered instead. The default value is zero, which causes point to always be centered after scrolling. When the window does scroll by a distance longer than scroll-step, you can control how aggressively it scrolls by setting the variables scroll-up-aggressively and scroll-down-aggressively. The value of scroll-up-aggressively should be either nil, or a fraction f between 0 and 1. A fraction species where on the screen to put point when scrolling upward, i.e. forward. When point goes o the window end, the new start position is chosen to put point f parts of the window height from the bottom margin. Thus, larger f means more aggressive scrolling: more new text is brought into view. The default value, nil, is equivalent to 0.5.

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Likewise, scroll-down-aggressively is used for scrolling down, i.e. backward. The value species how far point should be placed from the top margin of the window; thus, as with scroll-up-aggressively, a larger value is more aggressive. These two variables are ignored if either scroll-step or scrollconservatively are set to a non-zero value. The variable scroll-margin restricts how close point can come to the top or bottom of a window (even if aggressive scrolling species a fraction f that is larger than the window portion between the top and the bottom margins). Its value is a number of screen lines; if point comes within that many lines of the top or bottom of the window, Emacs performs automatic scrolling. By default, scroll-margin is 0.

11.4 Horizontal Scrolling


Horizontal scrolling means shifting all the lines sideways within a window, so that some of the text near the left margin is not displayed. When the text in a window is scrolled horizontally, text lines are truncated rather than continued (see Section 11.21 [Line Truncation], page 89). If a window shows truncated lines, Emacs performs automatic horizontal scrolling whenever point moves o the left or right edge of the screen. To disable automatic horizontal scrolling, set the variable autohscroll-mode to nil. Note that when the automatic horizontal scrolling is turned o, if point moves o the edge of the screen, the cursor disappears to indicate that. (On text terminals, the cursor is left at the edge instead.) The variable hscroll-margin controls how close point can get to the windows edges before automatic scrolling occurs. It is measured in columns. For example, if the value is 5, then moving point within 5 columns of an edge causes horizontal scrolling away from that edge. The variable hscroll-step determines how many columns to scroll the window when point gets too close to the edge. Zero, the default value, means to center point horizontally within the window. A positive integer value species the number of columns to scroll by. A oating-point number species the fraction of the windows width to scroll by. You can also perform explicit horizontal scrolling with the following commands: C-x < C-x > Scroll text in current window to the left (scroll-left). Scroll to the right (scroll-right).

C-x < (scroll-left) scrolls text in the selected window to the left by the full width of the window, less two columns. (In other words, the text in the window moves left relative to the window.) With a numeric argument n, it scrolls by n columns. If the text is scrolled to the left, and point moves o the left edge of the window, the cursor will freeze at the left edge of the window, until point moves back to the displayed portion of the text. This is independent of the current setting of autohscroll-mode, which, for text scrolled to the left, only aects the behavior at the right edge of the window.

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C-x > (scroll-right) scrolls similarly to the right. The window cannot be scrolled any farther to the right once it is displayed normally, with each line starting at the windows left margin; attempting to do so has no eect. This means that you dont have to calculate the argument precisely for C-x >; any suciently large argument will restore the normal display. If you use those commands to scroll a window horizontally, that sets a lower bound for automatic horizontal scrolling. Automatic scrolling will continue to scroll the window, but never farther to the right than the amount you previously set by scroll-left.

11.5 Narrowing
Narrowing means focusing in on some portion of the buer, making the rest temporarily inaccessible. The portion which you can still get to is called the accessible portion. Canceling the narrowing, which makes the entire buer once again accessible, is called widening. The bounds of narrowing in eect in a buer are called the buers restriction. Narrowing can make it easier to concentrate on a single subroutine or paragraph by eliminating clutter. It can also be used to limit the range of operation of a replace command or repeating keyboard macro. C-x n n C-x n w C-x n p C-x n d Narrow down to between point and mark (narrow-to-region). Widen to make the entire buer accessible again (widen). Narrow down to the current page (narrow-to-page). Narrow down to the current defun (narrow-to-defun).

When you have narrowed down to a part of the buer, that part appears to be all there is. You cant see the rest, you cant move into it (motion commands wont go outside the accessible part), you cant change it in any way. However, it is not gone, and if you save the le all the inaccessible text will be saved. The word Narrow appears in the mode line whenever narrowing is in eect. The primary narrowing command is C-x n n (narrow-to-region). It sets the current buers restrictions so that the text in the current region remains accessible, but all text before the region or after the region is inaccessible. Point and mark do not change. Alternatively, use C-x n p (narrow-to-page) to narrow down to the current page. See Section 22.4 [Pages], page 217, for the denition of a page. C-x n d (narrow-to-defun) narrows down to the defun containing point (see Section 23.2 [Defuns], page 250). The way to cancel narrowing is to widen with C-x n w (widen). This makes all text in the buer accessible again. You can get information on what part of the buer you are narrowed down to using the C-x = command. See Section 4.9 [Position Info], page 23. Because narrowing can easily confuse users who do not understand it, narrowto-region is normally a disabled command. Attempting to use this command

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asks for conrmation and gives you the option of enabling it; if you enable the command, conrmation will no longer be required for it. See Section 33.3.11 [Disabling], page 460.

11.6 View Mode


View mode is a minor mode that lets you scan a buer by sequential screenfuls. It provides commands for scrolling through the buer conveniently but not for changing it. Apart from the usual Emacs cursor motion commands, you can type SPC to scroll forward one windowful, DEL to scroll backward, and s to start an incremental search. Typing q (View-quit) disables View mode, and switches back to the buer and position before View mode was enabled. Typing e (View-exit) disables View mode, keeping the current buer and position. M-x view-buffer prompts for an existing Emacs buer, switches to it, and enables View mode. M-x view-file prompts for a le and visits it with View mode enabled.

11.7 Follow Mode


Follow mode is a minor mode that makes two windows, both showing the same buer, scroll as a single tall virtual window. To use Follow mode, go to a frame with just one window, split it into two side-by-side windows using C-x 3, and then type M-x follow-mode. From then on, you can edit the buer in either of the two windows, or scroll either one; the other window follows it. In Follow mode, if you move point outside the portion visible in one window and into the portion visible in the other window, that selects the other windowagain, treating the two as if they were parts of one large window. To turn o Follow mode, type M-x follow-mode a second time.

11.8 Text Faces


Emacs can display text in several dierent styles, called faces. Each face can specify various face attributes, such as the font, height, weight, slant, foreground and background color, and underlining or overlining. Most major modes assign faces to the text automatically, via Font Lock mode. See Section 11.12 [Font Lock], page 80, for more information about how these faces are assigned. To see what faces are currently dened, and what they look like, type M-x list-faces-display. With a prex argument, this prompts for a regular expression, and displays only faces with names matching that regular expression (see Section 12.5 [Regexps], page 97). Its possible for a given face to look dierent in dierent frames. For instance, some text terminals do not support all face attributes, particularly font, height, and width, and some support a limited range of colors. You can customize a face to alter its appearance, and save those changes for future Emacs sessions. See Section 33.1.5 [Face Customization], page 439. A face

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does not have to specify every single attribute; often it inherits most attributes from another face. Any ultimately unspecied attribute is taken from the face named default. The default face is the default for displaying text, and all of its attributes are specied. Its background color is also used as the frames background color. See Section 11.9 [Colors], page 76. Another special face is the cursor face. On graphical displays, the background color of this face is used to draw the text cursor. None of the other attributes of this face have any eect; the foreground color for text under the cursor is taken from the background color of the underlying text. On text terminals, the appearance of the text cursor is determined by the terminal, not by the cursor face. You can also use X resources to specify attributes of any particular face. See Section D.1 [Resources], page 521. Emacs can display variable-width fonts, but some Emacs commands, particularly indentation commands, do not account for variable character display widths. Therefore, we recommend not using variable-width fonts for most faces, particularly those assigned by Font Lock mode.

11.9 Colors for Faces


Faces can have various foreground and background colors. When you specify a color for a facefor instance, when customizing the face (see Section 33.1.5 [Face Customization], page 439)you can use either a color name or an RGB triplet. A color name is a pre-dened name, such as dark orange or medium sea green. To view a list of color names, type M-x list-colors-display. To control the order in which colors are shown, customize list-colors-sort. If you run this command on a graphical display, it shows the full range of color names known to Emacs (these are the standard X11 color names, dened in Xs rgb.txt le). If you run the command on a text terminal, it shows only a small subset of colors that can be safely displayed on such terminals. However, Emacs understands X11 color names even on text terminals; if a face is given a color specied by an X11 color name, it is displayed using the closest-matching terminal color. An RGB triplet is a string of the form #RRGGBB. Each of the R, G, and B components is a hexadecimal number specifying the components relative intensity, one to four digits long (usually two digits are used). The components must have the same number of digits. For hexadecimal values A to F, either upper or lower case are acceptable. The M-x list-colors-display command also shows the equivalent RGB triplet for each named color. For instance, medium sea green is equivalent to #3CB371. You can change the foreground and background colors of a face with M-x set-face-foreground and M-x set-face-background. These commands prompt in the minibuer for a face name and a color, with completion, and then set that face to use the specied color. They aect the face colors on all frames, but their eects do not persist for future Emacs sessions, unlike using the customization buer or

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X resources. You can also use frame parameters to set foreground and background colors for a specic frame; See Section 18.11 [Frame Parameters], page 175.

11.10 Standard Faces


Here are the standard faces for specifying text appearance. You can apply them to specic text when you want the eects they produce. default bold italic bold-italic This face uses a bold italic variant of the default font. underline fixed-pitch This face forces use of a xed-width font. Its reasonable to customize this face to use a dierent xed-width font, if you like, but you should not make it a variable-width font. variable-pitch This face forces use of a variable-width font. shadow This face is used for making the text less noticeable than the surrounding ordinary text. Usually this can be achieved by using shades of gray in contrast with either black or white default foreground color. This face underlines text. This face is used for ordinary text that doesnt specify any face. Its background color is used as the frames background color. This face uses a bold variant of the default font. This face uses an italic variant of the default font.

Heres an incomplete list of faces used to highlight parts of the text temporarily for specic purposes. (Many other modes dene their own faces for this purpose.) highlight isearch This face is used for text highlighting in various contexts, such as when the mouse cursor is moved over a hyperlink. This face is used to highlight the current Isearch match (see Section 12.1 [Incremental Search], page 91).

query-replace This face is used to highlight the current Query Replace match (see Section 12.9 [Replace], page 103). lazy-highlight This face is used to highlight lazy matches for Isearch and Query Replace (matches other than the current one). region This face is used for displaying an active region (see Chapter 8 [Mark], page 47). When Emacs is built with GTK support, its colors are taken from the current GTK theme.

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secondary-selection This face is used for displaying a secondary X selection (see Section 9.3.3 [Secondary Selection], page 61). trailing-whitespace The face for highlighting excess spaces and tabs at the end of a line when show-trailing-whitespace is non-nil (see Section 11.16 [Useless Whitespace], page 84). escape-glyph The face for displaying control characters and escape sequences (see Section 11.19 [Text Display], page 87). nobreak-space The face for displaying no-break space characters (see Section 11.19 [Text Display], page 87). The following faces control the appearance of parts of the Emacs frame: mode-line This face is used for the mode line of the currently selected window, and for menu bars when toolkit menus are not used. By default, its drawn with shadows for a raised eect on graphical displays, and drawn as the inverse of the default face on non-windowed terminals.

mode-line-inactive Like mode-line, but used for mode lines of the windows other than the selected one (if mode-line-in-non-selected-windows is non-nil). This face inherits from mode-line, so changes in that face aect mode lines in all windows. mode-line-highlight Like highlight, but used for portions of text on mode lines. mode-line-buffer-id This face is used for buer identication parts in the mode line. header-line Similar to mode-line for a windows header line, which appears at the top of a window just as the mode line appears at the bottom. Most windows do not have a header lineonly some special modes, such Info mode, create one. vertical-border This face is used for the vertical divider between windows on text terminals. minibuffer-prompt This face is used for the prompt strings displayed in the minibuffer. By default, Emacs automatically adds this face to the value of minibuffer-prompt-properties, which is a list of text properties used to display the prompt text. (This variable takes eect when you enter the minibuer.)

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The face for the fringes to the left and right of windows on graphic displays. (The fringes are the narrow portions of the Emacs frame between the text area and the windows right and left borders.) See Section 11.14 [Fringes], page 83. The :background attribute of this face species the color of the text cursor. See Section 11.20 [Cursor Display], page 88. This face is used for tooltip text. By default, if Emacs is built with GTK support, tooltips are drawn via GTK and this face has no eect. See Section 18.17 [Tooltips], page 178. This face determines the color of the mouse pointer.

cursor tooltip

mouse

The following faces likewise control the appearance of parts of the Emacs frame, but only on text terminals, or when Emacs is built on X with no toolkit support. (For all other cases, the appearance of the respective frame elements is determined by system-wide settings.) scroll-bar This face determines the visual appearance of the scroll bar. See Section 18.12 [Scroll Bars], page 176. tool-bar menu This face determines the color of tool bar icons. See Section 18.15 [Tool Bars], page 177. This face determines the colors and font of Emacss menus. Section 18.14 [Menu Bars], page 176. See

11.11 Text Scale


To increase the height of the default face in the current buer, type C-x C-+ or C-x C-=. To decrease it, type C-x C--. To restore the default (global) face height, type C-x C-0. These keys are all bound to the same command, text-scale-adjust, which looks at the last key typed to determine which action to take. The nal key of these commands may be repeated without the leading C-x. For instance, C-x C-= C-= C-= increases the face height by three steps. Each step scales the text height by a factor of 1.2; to change this factor, customize the variable text-scale-mode-step. As an exception, a numeric argument of 0 to the textscale-adjust command restores the default height, similar to typing C-x C-0. The commands text-scale-increase and text-scale-decrease increase or decrease the height of the default face, just like C-x C-+ and C-x C-- respectively. You may nd it convenient to bind to these commands, rather than text-scaleadjust. The command text-scale-set scales the height of the default face in the current buer to an absolute level specied by its prex argument. The above commands automatically enable the minor mode text-scale-mode if the current font scaling is other than 1, and disable it otherwise.

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11.12 Font Lock mode


Font Lock mode is a minor mode, always local to a particular buer, which assigns faces to (or fonties ) the text in the buer. Each buers major mode tells Font Lock mode which text to fontify; for instance, programming language modes fontify syntactically relevant constructs like comments, strings, and function names. Font Lock mode is enabled by default. To toggle it in the current buer, type M-x font-lock-mode. A positive numeric argument unconditionally enables Font Lock mode, and a negative or zero argument disables it. Type M-x global-font-lock-mode to toggle Font Lock mode in all buers. To impose this setting for future Emacs sessions, customize the variable global-fontlock-mode (see Section 33.1 [Easy Customization], page 434), or add the following line to your init le: (global-font-lock-mode 0) If you have disabled Global Font Lock mode, you can still enable Font Lock for specic major modes by adding the function font-lock-mode to the mode hooks (see Section 33.2.2 [Hooks], page 445). For example, to enable Font Lock mode for editing C les, you can do this: (add-hook c-mode-hook font-lock-mode) Font Lock mode uses several specically named faces to do its job, including font-lock-string-face, font-lock-comment-face, and others. The easiest way to nd them all is to use M-x customize-group RET font-lock-faces RET. You can then use that customization buer to customize the appearance of these faces. See Section 33.1.5 [Face Customization], page 439. You can customize the variable font-lock-maximum-decoration to alter the amount of fontication applied by Font Lock mode, for major modes that support this feature. The value should be a number (with 1 representing a minimal amount of fontication; some modes support levels as high as 3); or t, meaning as high as possible (the default). You can also specify dierent numbers for particular major modes; for example, to use level 1 for C/C++ modes, and the default level otherwise, use the value ((c-mode . 1) (c++-mode . 1))) Comment and string fontication (or syntactic fontication) relies on analysis of the syntactic structure of the buer text. For the sake of speed, some modes, including Lisp mode, rely on a special convention: an open-parenthesis or openbrace in the leftmost column always denes the beginning of a defun, and is thus always outside any string or comment. Therefore, you should avoid placing an open-parenthesis or open-brace in the leftmost column, if it is inside a string or comment. See Section 23.2.1 [Left Margin Paren], page 250, for details. The variable font-lock-beginning-of-syntax-function, which is always buer-local, species how Font Lock mode can nd a position guaranteed to be outside any comment or string. In modes which use the leftmost column parenthesis convention, the default value of the variable is beginning-of-defunthat tells Font Lock mode to use the convention. If you set this variable to nil, Font Lock no longer relies on the convention. This avoids incorrect results, but the price is

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that, in some cases, fontication for a changed text must rescan buer text from the beginning of the buer. This can considerably slow down redisplay while scrolling, particularly if you are close to the end of a large buer. Font Lock highlighting patterns already exist for most modes, but you may want to fontify additional patterns. You can use the function font-lock-add-keywords, to add your own highlighting patterns for a particular mode. For example, to highlight FIXME: words in C comments, use this: (add-hook c-mode-hook (lambda () (font-lock-add-keywords nil (("\\<\\(FIXME\\):" 1 font-lock-warning-face t))))) To remove keywords from the font-lock highlighting patterns, use the function fontlock-remove-keywords. See Section Search-based Fontication in The Emacs Lisp Reference Manual . Fontifying large buers can take a long time. To avoid large delays when a le is visited, Emacs initially fonties only the visible portion of a buer. As you scroll through the buer, each portion that becomes visible is fontied as soon as it is displayed; this type of Font Lock is called Just-In-Time (or JIT ) Lock. You can control how JIT Lock behaves, including telling it to perform fontication while idle, by customizing variables in the customization group jit-lock. See Section 33.1.6 [Specic Customization], page 440.

11.13 Interactive Highlighting


Highlight Changes mode is a minor mode that highlights the parts of the buer that were changed most recently, by giving that text a dierent face. To enable or disable Highlight Changes mode, use M-x highlight-changes-mode. Hi Lock mode is a minor mode that highlights text that matches regular expressions you specify. For example, you can use it to highlight all the references to a certain variable in a program source le, highlight certain parts in a voluminous output of some program, or highlight certain names in an article. To enable or disable Hi Lock mode, use the command M-x hi-lock-mode. To enable Hi Lock mode for all buers, use M-x global-hi-lock-mode or place (global-hi-lock-mode 1) in your .emacs le. Hi Lock mode works like Font Lock mode (see Section 11.12 [Font Lock], page 80), except that you specify explicitly the regular expressions to highlight. You control them with these commands: C-x w h regexp RET face RET Highlight text that matches regexp using face face (highlightregexp). The highlighting will remain as long as the buer is loaded. For example, to highlight all occurrences of the word whim using the default face (a yellow background) C-x w h whim RET RET. Any face can be used for highlighting, Hi Lock provides several of its own

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and these are pre-loaded into a list of default values. While being prompted for a face use M-n and M-p to cycle through them. You can use this command multiple times, specifying various regular expressions to highlight in dierent ways. C-x w r regexp RET Unhighlight regexp (unhighlight-regexp). If you invoke this from the menu, you select the expression to unhighlight from a list. If you invoke this from the keyboard, you use the minibuer. It will show the most recently added regular expression; use M-p to show the next older expression and M-n to select the next newer expression. (You can also type the expression by hand, with completion.) When the expression you want to unhighlight appears in the minibuer, press RET to exit the minibuer and unhighlight it. C-x w l regexp RET face RET Highlight entire lines containing a match for regexp, using face face (highlight-lines-matching-regexp). C-x w b Insert all the current highlighting regexp/face pairs into the buer at point, with comment delimiters to prevent them from changing your program. (This key binding runs the hi-lock-write-interactivepatterns command.) These patterns are extracted from the comments, if appropriate, if you invoke M-x hi-lock-find-patterns, or if you visit the le while Hi Lock mode is enabled (since that runs hi-lock-find-patterns). C-x w i Extract regexp/face pairs from comments in the current buer (hilock-find-patterns). Thus, you can enter patterns interactively with highlight-regexp, store them into the le with hi-lockwrite-interactive-patterns, edit them (perhaps including dierent faces for dierent parenthesized parts of the match), and nally use this command (hi-lock-find-patterns) to have Hi Lock highlight the edited patterns. The variable hi-lock-file-patterns-policy controls whether Hi Lock mode should automatically extract and highlight patterns found in a le when it is visited. Its value can be nil (never highlight), ask (query the user), or a function. If it is a function, hi-lockfind-patterns calls it with the patterns as argument; if the function returns non-nil, the patterns are used. The default is ask. Note that patterns are always highlighted if you call hi-lock-find-patterns directly, regardless of the value of this variable. Also, hi-lock-find-patterns does nothing if the current major modes symbol is a member of the list hi-lock-exclude-modes.

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11.14 Window Fringes


On graphical displays, each Emacs window normally has narrow fringes on the left and right edges. The fringes are used to display symbols that provide information about the text in the window. You can type M-x fringe-mode to disable the fringes, or modify their width. This command aects fringes in all frames; to modify fringes on the selected frame only, use M-x set-fringe-style. The most common use of the fringes is to indicate a continuation line (see Section 4.8 [Continuation Lines], page 23). When one line of text is split into multiple screen lines, the left fringe shows a curving arrow for each screen line except the rst, indicating that this is not the real beginning. The right fringe shows a curving arrow for each screen line except the last, indicating that this is not the real end. If the lines direction is right-to-left (see Section 19.20 [Bidirectional Editing], page 202), the meanings of the curving arrows in the fringes are swapped. The fringes indicate line truncation with short horizontal arrows meaning theres more text on this line which is scrolled horizontally out of view. Clicking the mouse on one of the arrows scrolls the display horizontally in the direction of the arrow. The fringes can also indicate other things, such as buer boundaries (see Section 11.15 [Displaying Boundaries], page 83), and where a program you are debugging is executing (see Section 24.6 [Debuggers], page 276). The fringe is also used for drawing the cursor, if the current line is exactly as wide as the window and point is at the end of the line. To disable this, change the variable overflow-newline-into-fringe to nil; this causes Emacs to continue or truncate lines that are exactly as wide as the window.

11.15 Displaying Boundaries


On graphical displays, Emacs can indicate the buer boundaries in the fringes. If you enable this feature, the rst line and the last line are marked with angle images in the fringes. This can be combined with up and down arrow images which say whether it is possible to scroll the window. The buer-local variable indicate-buffer-boundaries controls how the buer boundaries and window scrolling is indicated in the fringes. If the value is left or right, both angle and arrow bitmaps are displayed in the left or right fringe, respectively. If value is an alist, each element (indicator . position ) species the position of one of the indicators. The indicator must be one of top, bottom, up, down, or t which species the default position for the indicators not present in the alist. The position is one of left, right, or nil which species not to show this indicator. For example, ((top . left) (t . right)) places the top angle bitmap in left fringe, the bottom angle bitmap in right fringe, and both arrow bitmaps in right fringe. To show just the angle bitmaps in the left fringe, but no arrow bitmaps, use ((top . left) (bottom . left)).

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11.16 Useless Whitespace


It is easy to leave unnecessary spaces at the end of a line, or empty lines at the end of a le, without realizing it. In most cases, this trailing whitespace has no eect, but there are special circumstances where it matters, and it can be a nuisance. You can make trailing whitespace at the end of a line visible by setting the buer-local variable show-trailing-whitespace to t. Then Emacs displays trailing whitespace, using the face trailing-whitespace. This feature does not apply when point is at the end of the line containing the whitespace. Strictly speaking, that is trailing whitespace nonetheless, but displaying it specially in that case looks ugly while you are typing in new text. In this special case, the location of point is enough to show you that the spaces are present. Type M-x delete-trailing-whitespace to delete all trailing whitespace within the buer. If the region is active, it deletes all trailing whitespace in the region instead. On graphical displays, Emacs can indicate unused lines at the end of the window with a small image in the left fringe (see Section 11.14 [Fringes], page 83). The image appears for screen lines that do not correspond to any buer text, so blank lines at the end of the buer stand out because they lack this image. To enable this feature, set the buer-local variable indicate-empty-lines to a non-nil value. You can enable or disable this feature for all new buers by setting the default value of this variable, e.g. (setq-default indicate-empty-lines t). Whitespace mode is a buer-local minor mode that lets you visualize many kinds of whitespace in the buer, by either drawing the whitespace characters with a special face or displaying them as special glyphs. To toggle this mode, type M-x whitespace-mode. The kinds of whitespace visualized are determined by the list variable whitespace-style. Here is a partial list of possible elements (see the variables documentation for the full list): face Enable all visualizations which use special faces. This element has a special meaning: if it is absent from the list, none of the other visualizations take eect except space-mark, tab-mark, and newlinemark. Highlight trailing whitespace. Highlight tab characters. Highlight space and non-breaking space characters. Highlight lines longer than 80 lines. To change the column limit, customize the variable whitespace-line-column. Highlight newlines. Highlight empty lines. Draw space and non-breaking characters with a special glyph.

trailing tabs spaces lines newline empty space-mark

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newline-mark Draw newline characters with a special glyph.

11.17 Selective Display


Emacs has the ability to hide lines indented more than a given number of columns. You can use this to get an overview of a part of a program. To hide lines in the current buer, type C-x $ (set-selective-display) with a numeric argument n. Then lines with at least n columns of indentation disappear from the screen. The only indication of their presence is that three dots (...) appear at the end of each visible line that is followed by one or more hidden ones. The commands C-n and C-p move across the hidden lines as if they were not there. The hidden lines are still present in the buer, and most editing commands see them as usual, so you may nd point in the middle of the hidden text. When this happens, the cursor appears at the end of the previous line, after the three dots. If point is at the end of the visible line, before the newline that ends it, the cursor appears before the three dots. To make all lines visible again, type C-x $ with no argument. If you set the variable selective-display-ellipses to nil, the three dots do not appear at the end of a line that precedes hidden lines. Then there is no visible indication of the hidden lines. This variable becomes local automatically when set. See also Section 22.8 [Outline Mode], page 224 for another way to hide part of the text in a buer.

11.18 Optional Mode Line Features


The buer percentage pos indicates the percentage of the buer above the top of the window. You can additionally display the size of the buer by typing M-x size-indication-mode to turn on Size Indication mode. The size will be displayed immediately following the buer percentage like this: POS of SIZE Here SIZE is the human readable representation of the number of characters in the buer, which means that k for 10^3, M for 10^6, G for 10^9, etc., are used to abbreviate. The current line number of point appears in the mode line when Line Number mode is enabled. Use the command M-x line-number-mode to turn this mode on and o; normally it is on. The line number appears after the buer percentage pos, with the letter L to indicate what it is. Similarly, you can display the current column number by turning on Column number mode with M-x column-number-mode. The column number is indicated by the letter C. However, when both of these modes are enabled, the line and column numbers are displayed in parentheses, the line number rst, rather than with L

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and C. For example: (561,2). See Section 20.2 [Minor Modes], page 205, for more information about minor modes and about how to use these commands. If you have narrowed the buer (see Section 11.5 [Narrowing], page 74), the displayed line number is relative to the accessible portion of the buer. Thus, it isnt suitable as an argument to goto-line. (Use what-line command to see the line number relative to the whole le.) If the buer is very large (larger than the value of line-number-displaylimit), Emacs wont compute the line number, because that would be too slow; therefore, the line number wont appear on the mode-line. To remove this limit, set line-number-display-limit to nil. Line-number computation can also be slow if the lines in the buer are too long. For this reason, Emacs doesnt display line numbers if the average width, in characters, of lines near point is larger than the value of line-number-displaylimit-width. The default value is 200 characters. Emacs can optionally display the time and system load in all mode lines. To enable this feature, type M-x display-time or customize the option display-timemode. The information added to the mode line looks like this: hh :mm pm l.ll Here hh and mm are the hour and minute, followed always by am or pm. l.ll is the average number, collected for the last few minutes, of processes in the whole system that were either running or ready to run (i.e. were waiting for an available processor). (Some elds may be missing if your operating system cannot support them.) If you prefer time display in 24-hour format, set the variable display-time24hr-format to t. The word Mail appears after the load level if there is mail for you that you have not read yet. On graphical displays, you can use an icon instead of Mail by customizing display-time-use-mail-icon; this may save some space on the mode line. You can customize display-time-mail-face to make the mail indicator prominent. Use display-time-mail-file to specify the mail le to check, or set display-time-mail-directory to specify the directory to check for incoming mail (any nonempty regular le in the directory is considered as newly arrived mail). When running Emacs on a laptop computer, you can display the battery charge on the mode-line, by using the command display-battery-mode or customizing the variable display-battery-mode. The variable battery-mode-line-format determines the way the battery charge is displayed; the exact mode-line message depends on the operating system, and it usually shows the current battery charge as a percentage of the total charge. On graphical displays, the mode line is drawn as a 3D box. If you dont like this eect, you can disable it by customizing the mode-line face and setting its box attribute to nil. See Section 33.1.5 [Face Customization], page 439. By default, the mode line of nonselected windows is displayed in a dierent face, called mode-line-inactive. Only the selected window is displayed in the mode-line face. This helps show which window is selected. When the minibuer is selected, since it has no mode line, the window from which you activated the

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minibuer has its mode line displayed using mode-line; as a result, ordinary entry to the minibuer does not change any mode lines. You can disable use of mode-line-inactive by setting variable mode-line-innon-selected-windows to nil; then all mode lines are displayed in the mode-line face. You can customize the mode line display for each of the end-of-line formats by setting each of the variables eol-mnemonic-unix, eol-mnemonic-dos, eolmnemonic-mac, and eol-mnemonic-undecided to the strings you prefer.

11.19 How Text Is Displayed


Most characters are printing characters : when they appear in a buer, they are displayed literally on the screen. Printing characters include ASCII numbers, letters, and punctuation characters, as well as many non-ASCII characters. The ASCII character set contains non-printing control characters. Two of these are displayed specially: the newline character (Unicode code point U+000A) is displayed by starting a new line, while the tab character (U+0009) is displayed as a space that extends to the next tab stop column (normally every 8 columns). The number of spaces per tab is controlled by the buer-local variable tab-width, which must have an integer value between 1 and 1000, inclusive. Note that how the tab character in the buer is displayed has nothing to do with the denition of TAB as a command. Other ASCII control characters, whose codes are below U+0020 (octal 40, decimal 32), are displayed as a caret (^) followed by the non-control version of the character, with the escape-glyph face. For instance, the control-A character, U+0001, is displayed as ^A. The raw bytes with codes U+0080 (octal 200) through U+009F (octal 237) are displayed as octal escape sequences, with the escape-glyph face. For instance, character code U+0098 (octal 230) is displayed as \230. If you change the buerlocal variable ctl-arrow to nil, the ASCII control characters are also displayed as octal escape sequences instead of caret escape sequences. Some non-ASCII characters have the same appearance as an ASCII space or hyphen (minus) character. Such characters can cause problems if they are entered into a buer without your realization, e.g. by yanking; for instance, source code compilers typically do not treat non-ASCII spaces as whitespace characters. To deal with this problem, Emacs displays such characters specially: it displays U+00A0 (nobreak space) with the nobreak-space face, and it displays U+00AD (soft hyphen), U+2010 (hyphen), and U+2011 (non-breaking hyphen) with the escape-glyph face. To disable this, change the variable nobreak-char-display to nil. If you give this variable a non-nil and non-t value, Emacs instead displays such characters as a highlighted backslash followed by a space or hyphen. You can customize the way any particular character code is displayed by means of a display table. See Section Display Tables in The Emacs Lisp Reference Manual .

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On graphical displays, some characters may have no glyphs in any of the fonts available to Emacs. These glyphless characters are normally displayed as boxes containing the hexadecimal character code. Similarly, on text terminals, characters that cannot be displayed using the terminal encoding (see Section 19.13 [Terminal Coding], page 196) are normally displayed as question signs. You can control the display method by customizing the variable glyphless-char-display-control. See Section Glyphless Character Display in The Emacs Lisp Reference Manual , for details.

11.20 Displaying the Cursor


On a text terminal, the cursors appearance is controlled by the terminal, largely out of the control of Emacs. Some terminals oer two dierent cursors: a visible static cursor, and a very visible blinking cursor. By default, Emacs uses the very visible cursor, and switches to it when you start or resume Emacs. If the variable visible-cursor is nil when Emacs starts or resumes, it uses the normal cursor. On a graphical display, many more properties of the text cursor can be altered. To customize its color, change the :background attribute of the face named cursor (see Section 33.1.5 [Face Customization], page 439). (The other attributes of this face have no eect; the text shown under the cursor is drawn using the frames background color.) To change its shape, customize the buer-local variable cursortype; possible values are box (the default), hollow (a hollow box), bar (a vertical bar), (bar . n ) (a vertical bar n pixels wide), hbar (a horizontal bar), (hbar . n ) (a horizontal bar n pixels tall), or nil (no cursor at all). To disable cursor blinking, change the variable blink-cursor-mode to nil (see Section 33.1 [Easy Customization], page 434), or add the line (blink-cursor-mode 0) to your init le. Alternatively, you can change how the cursor looks when it blinks o by customizing the list variable blink-cursor-alist. Each element in the list should have the form (on-type . off-type ); this means that if the cursor is displayed as on-type when it blinks on (where on-type is one of the cursor types described above), then it is displayed as o-type when it blinks o. Some characters, such as tab characters, are extra wide. When the cursor is positioned over such a character, it is normally drawn with the default character width. You can make the cursor stretch to cover wide characters, by changing the variable x-stretch-cursor to a non-nil value. The cursor normally appears in non-selected windows as a non-blinking hollow box. (For a bar cursor, it instead appears as a thinner bar.) To turn o cursors in non-selected windows, change the variable cursor-in-non-selected-windows to nil. To make the cursor even more visible, you can use HL Line mode, a minor mode that highlights the line containing point. Use M-x hl-line-mode to enable or disable it in the current buer. M-x global-hl-line-mode enables or disables the same mode globally.

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11.21 Line Truncation


As an alternative to continuation (see Section 4.8 [Continuation Lines], page 23), Emacs can display long lines by truncation. This means that all the characters that do not t in the width of the screen or window do not appear at all. On graphical displays, a small straight arrow in the fringe indicates truncation at either end of the line. On text terminals, this is indicated with $ signs in the leftmost and/or rightmost columns. Horizontal scrolling automatically causes line truncation (see Section 11.4 [Horizontal Scrolling], page 73). You can explicitly enable line truncation for a particular buer with the command M-x toggle-truncate-lines. This works by locally changing the variable truncate-lines. If that variable is non-nil, long lines are truncated; if it is nil, they are continued onto multiple screen lines. Setting the variable truncate-lines in any way makes it local to the current buer; until that time, the default value, which is normally nil, is in eect. If a split window becomes too narrow, Emacs may automatically enable line truncation. See Section 17.2 [Split Window], page 159, for the variable truncatepartial-width-windows which controls this.

11.22 Visual Line Mode


Another alternative to ordinary line continuation is to use word wrap. Here, each long logical line is divided into two or more screen lines, like in ordinary line continuation. However, Emacs attempts to wrap the line at word boundaries near the right window edge. This makes the text easier to read, as wrapping does not occur in the middle of words. Word wrap is enabled by Visual Line mode, an optional minor mode. To turn on Visual Line mode in the current buer, type M-x visual-line-mode; repeating this command turns it o. You can also turn on Visual Line mode using the menu bar: in the Options menu, select the Line Wrapping in this Buffer submenu, followed by the Word Wrap (Visual Line Mode) menu item. While Visual Line mode is enabled, the mode-line shows the string wrap in the mode display. The command M-x global-visual-line-mode toggles Visual Line mode in all buers. In Visual Line mode, some editing commands work on screen lines instead of logical lines: C-a (beginning-of-visual-line) moves to the beginning of the screen line, C-e (end-of-visual-line) moves to the end of the screen line, and C-k (killvisual-line) kills text to the end of the screen line. To move by logical lines, use the commands M-x next-logical-line and M-x previous-logical-line. These move point to the next logical line and the previous logical line respectively, regardless of whether Visual Line mode is enabled. If you use these commands frequently, it may be convenient to assign key bindings to them. See Section 33.3.6 [Init Rebinding], page 455. By default, word-wrapped lines do not display fringe indicators. Visual Line mode is often used to edit les that contain many long logical lines, so having a fringe indicator for each wrapped line would be visually distracting. You can change this by customizing the variable visual-line-fringe-indicators.

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11.23 Customization of Display


This section describes variables that control miscellaneous aspects of the appearance of the Emacs screen. Beginning users can skip it. If the variable visible-bell is non-nil, Emacs attempts to make the whole screen blink when it would normally make an audible bell sound. This variable has no eect if your terminal does not have a way to make the screen blink. The variable echo-keystrokes controls the echoing of multi-character keys; its value is the number of seconds of pause required to cause echoing to start, or zero, meaning dont echo at all. The value takes eect when there is something to echo. See Section 1.2 [Echo Area], page 7. On graphical displays, Emacs displays the mouse pointer as an hourglass if Emacs is busy. To disable this feature, set the variable display-hourglass to nil. The variable hourglass-delay determines the number of seconds of busy time before the hourglass is shown; the default is 1. If the mouse pointer lies inside an Emacs frame, Emacs makes it invisible each time you type a character to insert text, to prevent it from obscuring the text. (To be precise, the hiding occurs when you type a self-inserting character. See Section 4.1 [Inserting Text], page 17.) Moving the mouse pointer makes it visible again. To disable this feature, set the variable make-pointer-invisible to nil. On graphical displays, the variable underline-minimum-offset determines the minimum distance between the baseline and underline, in pixels, for underlined text. By default, the value is 1; increasing it may improve the legibility of underlined text for certain fonts. (However, Emacs will never draw the underline below the current line area.) The variable x-underline-at-descent-line determines how to draw underlined text. The default is nil, which means to draw it at the baseline level of the font; if you change it to nil, Emacs draws the underline at the same height as the fonts descent line. The variable overline-margin species the vertical position of an overline above the text, including the height of the overline itself, in pixels; the default is 2. On some text terminals, bold face and inverse video together result in text that is hard to read. Call the function tty-suppress-bold-inverse-default-colors with a non-nil argument to suppress the eect of bold-face in this case.

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12 Searching and Replacement


Like other editors, Emacs has commands to search for occurrences of a string. Emacs also has commands to replace occurrences of a string with a dierent string. There are also commands that do the same thing, but search for patterns instead of xed strings. You can also search multiple les under the control of a tags table (see Section 25.3.6 [Tags Search], page 318) or through the Dired A command (see Section 27.7 [Operating on Files], page 335), or ask the grep program to do it (see Section 24.4 [Grep Searching], page 275).

12.1 Incremental Search


The principal search command in Emacs is incremental : it begins searching as soon as you type the rst character of the search string. As you type in the search string, Emacs shows you where the string (as you have typed it so far) would be found. When you have typed enough characters to identify the place you want, you can stop. Depending on what you plan to do next, you may or may not need to terminate the search explicitly with RET. C-s C-r Incremental search forward (isearch-forward). Incremental search backward (isearch-backward).

12.1.1 Basics of Incremental Search C-s C-r Begin incremental search (isearch-forward). Begin reverse incremental search (isearch-backward).

C-s (isearch-forward) starts a forward incremental search. It reads characters from the keyboard, and moves point just past the end of the next occurrence of those characters in the buer. For instance, if you type C-s and then F, that puts the cursor after the rst F that occurs in the buer after the starting point. Then if you then type O, the cursor moves to just after the rst FO; the F in that FO might not be the rst F previously found. After another O, the cursor moves to just after the rst FOO. At each step, Emacs highlights the current matchthe buer text that matches the search stringusing the isearch face (see Section 11.8 [Faces], page 75). The current search string is also displayed in the echo area. If you make a mistake typing the search string, type DEL. Each DEL cancels the last character of the search string. When you are satised with the place you have reached, type RET. This stops searching, leaving the cursor where the search brought it. Also, any command not specially meaningful in searches stops the searching and is then executed. Thus, typing C-a exits the search and then moves to the beginning of the line. RET is necessary only if the next command you want to type is a printing character, DEL, RET, or another character that is special within searches (C-q, C-w, C-r, C-s, C-y, M-y, M-r, M-c, M-e, and some others described below).

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As a special exception, entering RET when the search string is empty launches nonincremental search (see Section 12.2 [Nonincremental Search], page 95). When you exit the incremental search, it adds the original value of point to the mark ring, without activating the mark; you can thus use C-u C-SPC to return to where you were before beginning the search. See Section 8.4 [Mark Ring], page 51. It only does this if the mark was not already active. To search backwards, use C-r (isearch-backward) instead of C-s to start the search. A backward search nds matches that end before the starting point, just as a forward search nds matches that begin after it. 12.1.2 Repeating Incremental Search Suppose you search forward for FOO and nd a match, but not the one you expected to nd: the FOO you were aiming for occurs later in the buer. In this event, type another C-s to move to the next occurrence of the search string. You can repeat this any number of times. If you overshoot, you can cancel some C-s characters with DEL. Similarly, each C-r in a backward incremental search repeats the backward search. If you pause for a little while during incremental search, Emacs highlights all the other possible matches for the search string that are present on the screen. This helps you anticipate where you can get to by typing C-s or C-r to repeat the search. The other matches are highlighted dierently from the current match, using the customizable face lazy-highlight (see Section 11.8 [Faces], page 75). If you dont like this feature, you can disable it by setting isearch-lazy-highlight to nil. After exiting a search, you can search for the same string again by typing just C-s C-s. The rst C-s is the key that invokes incremental search, and the second C-s means search again. Similarly, C-r C-r searches backward for the last search string. In determining the last search string, it doesnt matter whether the string was searched for with C-s or C-r. If you are searching forward but you realize you were looking for something before the starting point, type C-r to switch to a backward search, leaving the search string unchanged. Similarly, C-s in a backward search switches to a forward search. If a search is failing and you ask to repeat it by typing another C-s, it starts again from the beginning of the buer. Repeating a failing reverse search with C-r starts again from the end. This is called wrapping around, and Wrapped appears in the search prompt once this has happened. If you keep on going past the original starting point of the search, it changes to Overwrapped, which means that you are revisiting matches that you have already seen. To reuse earlier search strings, use the search ring. The commands M-p and M-n move through the ring to pick a search string to reuse. These commands leave the selected search ring element in the minibuer, where you can edit it. To edit the current search string in the minibuer without replacing it with items from the search ring, type M-e. Type C-s or C-r to nish editing the string and search for it.

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If your string is not found at all, the echo area says Failing I-Search, and the cursor moves past the place where Emacs found as much of your string as it could. Thus, if you search for FOOT, and there is no FOOT, you might see the cursor after the FOO in FOOL. In the echo area, the part of the search string that failed to match is highlighted using the face isearch-fail. At this point, there are several things you can do. If your string was mistyped, you can use DEL to erase some of it and correct it. If you like the place you have found, you can type RET to remain there. Or you can type C-g, which removes from the search string the characters that could not be found (the T in FOOT), leaving those that were found (the FOO in FOOT). A second C-g at that point cancels the search entirely, returning point to where it was when the search started. The quit command, C-g, does special things during searches; just what it does depends on the status of the search. If the search has found what you specied and is waiting for input, C-g cancels the entire search, moving the cursor back to where you started the search. If C-g is typed when there are characters in the search string that have not been foundbecause Emacs is still searching for them, or because it has failed to nd themthen the search string characters which have not been found are discarded from the search string. With them gone, the search is now successful and waiting for more input, so a second C-g will cancel the entire search. 12.1.4 Special Input for Incremental Search Some of the characters you type during incremental search have special eects. If the search string you entered contains only lower-case letters, the search is case-insensitive; as long as an upper-case letter exists in the search string, the search becomes case-sensitive. If you delete the upper-case character from the search string, it ceases to have this eect. See Section 12.8 [Search Case], page 103. To search for a newline character, type C-j. To search for other control characters, such as CONTROL-S, quote it by typing C-q rst (see Section 4.1 [Inserting Text], page 17). To search for non-ASCII characters, you can either use C-q and enter its octal code, or use an input method (see Section 19.4 [Input Methods], page 185). If an input method is enabled in the current buer when you start the search, you can use it in the search string also. While typing the search string, you can toggle the input method with the command C-\ (isearch-toggle-input-method). You can also turn on a non-default input method with C-^ (isearch-toggle-specified-input-method), which prompts for the name of the input method. When an input method is active during incremental search, the search prompt includes the input method mnemonic, like this: I-search [im ]: where im is the mnemonic of the active input method. Any input method you enable during incremental search remains enabled in the current buer afterwards. Typing M-% in incremental search invokes query-replace or query-replaceregexp (depending on search mode) with the current search string used as the string to replace. See Section 12.9.4 [Query Replace], page 106.

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Typing M-TAB in incremental search invokes isearch-complete, which attempts to complete the search string using the search ring as a list of completion alternatives. See Section 5.3 [Completion], page 29. In many operating systems, the M-TAB key sequence is captured by the window manager; you then need to rebind isearch-complete to another key sequence if you want to use it (see Section 33.3.5 [Rebinding], page 454). When incremental search is active, you can type C-h C-h to access interactive help options, including a list of special key bindings. These key bindings are part of the keymap isearch-mode-map (see Section 33.3.1 [Keymaps], page 452). 12.1.5 Isearch Yanking Within incremental search, C-y (isearch-yank-kill) appends the current kill to the search string. M-y (isearch-yank-pop), if called after C-y, replaces that appended text with an earlier kill, similar to the usual M-y (yank-pop) command (see Section 9.2 [Yanking], page 57). Mouse-2 appends the current X selection (see Section 9.3.2 [Primary Selection], page 60). C-w (isearch-yank-word-or-char) appends the next character or word at point to the search string. This is an easy way to search for another occurrence of the text at point. (The decision of whether to copy a character or a word is heuristic.) Similarly, M-s C-e (isearch-yank-line) appends the rest of the current line to the search string. If point is already at the end of a line, it appends the next line. If the search is currently case-insensitive, both C-w and M-s C-e convert the text they copy to lower case, so that the search remains case-insensitive. C-M-w (isearch-del-char) deletes the last character from the search string, and C-M-y (isearch-yank-char) appends the character after point to the search string. An alternative method to add the character after point is to enter the minibuer with M-e (see Section 12.1.2 [Repeat Isearch], page 92) and type C-f at the end of the search string in the minibuer. 12.1.6 Scrolling During Incremental Search Normally, scrolling commands exit incremental search. If you change the variable isearch-allow-scroll to a non-nil value, that enables the use of the scroll-bar, as well as keyboard scrolling commands like C-v, M-v, and C-l (see Section 11.1 [Scrolling], page 70). This applies only to calling these commands via their bound key sequencestyping M-x will still exit the search. You can give prex arguments to these commands in the usual way. This feature wont let you scroll the current match out of visibility, however. The isearch-allow-scroll feature also aects some other commands, such as C-x 2 (split-window-below) and C-x ^ (enlarge-window), which dont exactly scroll but do aect where the text appears on the screen. It applies to any command whose name has a non-nil isearch-scroll property. So you can control which commands are aected by changing these properties. For example, to make C-h l usable within an incremental search in all future Emacs sessions, use C-h c to nd what command it runs (see Section 7.1 [Key Help],

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page 40), which is view-lossage. Then you can put the following line in your init le (see Section 33.4 [Init File], page 461): (put view-lossage isearch-scroll t) This feature can be applied to any command that doesnt permanently change point, the buer contents, the match data, the current buer, or the selected window and frame. The command must not itself attempt an incremental search. 12.1.7 Searching the Minibuer If you start an incremental search while the minibuer is active, Emacs searches the contents of the minibuer. Unlike searching an ordinary buer, the search string is not shown in the echo area, because that is used to display the minibuer. If an incremental search fails in the minibuer, it tries searching the minibuer history. See Section 5.4 [Minibuer History], page 34. You can visualize the minibuer and its history as a series of pages, with the earliest history element on the rst page and the current minibuer on the last page. A forward search, C-s, searches forward to later pages; a reverse search, C-r, searches backwards to earlier pages. Like in ordinary buer search, a failing search can wrap around, going from the last page to the rst page or vice versa. When the current match is on a history element, that history element is pulled into the minibuer. If you exit the incremental search normally (e.g. by typing RET), it remains in the minibuer afterwards. Canceling the search, with C-g, restores the contents of the minibuer when you began the search.

12.2 Nonincremental Search


Emacs also has conventional nonincremental search commands, which require you to type the entire search string before searching begins. C-s RET string RET Search for string. C-r RET string RET Search backward for string. To start a nonincremental search, rst type C-s RET. This enters the minibuer to read the search string; terminate the string with RET, and then the search takes place. If the string is not found, the search command signals an error. When you type C-s RET, the C-s invokes incremental search as usual. That command is specially programmed to invoke the command for nonincremental search, search-forward, if the string you specify is empty. (Such an empty argument would otherwise be useless.) C-r RET does likewise, invoking the command searchbackward.

12.3 Word Search


A word search nds a sequence of words without regard to the type of punctuation between them. For instance, if you enter a search string that consists of two words

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separated by a single space, the search matches any sequence of those two words separated by one or more spaces, newlines, or other punctuation characters. This is particularly useful for searching text documents, because you dont have to worry whether the words you are looking for are separated by newlines or spaces. M-s w If incremental search is active, toggle word search mode (isearchtoggle-word); otherwise, begin an incremental forward word search (isearch-forward-word).

M-s w RET words RET Search for words, using a forward nonincremental word search. M-s w C-r RET words RET Search backward for words, using a nonincremental word search. To begin a forward incremental word search, type M-s w. If incremental search is not already active, this runs the command isearch-forward-word. If incremental search is already active (whether a forward or backward search), M-s w switches to a word search while keeping the direction of the search and the current search string unchanged. You can toggle word search back o by typing M-s w again. To begin a nonincremental word search, type M-s w RET for a forward search, or M-s w C-r RET for a backward search. These run the commands word-searchforward and word-search-backward respectively. Incremental and nonincremental word searches dier slightly in the way they nd a match. In a nonincremental word search, the last word in the search string must exactly match a whole word. In an incremental word search, the matching is more lax: the last word in the search string can match part of a word, so that the matching proceeds incrementally as you type. This additional laxity does not apply to the lazy highlight, which always matches whole words.

12.4 Regular Expression Search


A regular expression (or regexp for short) is a pattern that denotes a class of alternative strings to match. Emacs provides both incremental and nonincremental ways to search for a match for a regexp. The syntax of regular expressions is explained in the next section. C-M-s C-M-r Begin incremental regexp search (isearch-forward-regexp). Begin reverse incremental regexp search (isearch-backwardregexp).

Incremental search for a regexp is done by typing C-M-s (isearch-forwardregexp), by invoking C-s with a prex argument (whose value does not matter), or by typing M-r within a forward incremental search. This command reads a search string incrementally just like C-s, but it treats the search string as a regexp rather than looking for an exact match against the text in the buer. Each time you add text to the search string, you make the regexp longer, and the new regexp is searched for. To search backward for a regexp, use C-M-r (isearch-backward-regexp), C-r with a prex argument, or M-r within a backward incremental search.

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All of the special key sequences in an ordinary incremental search do similar things in an incremental regexp search. For instance, typing C-s immediately after starting the search retrieves the last incremental search regexp used and searches forward for it. Incremental regexp and non-regexp searches have independent defaults. They also have separate search rings, which you can access with M-p and M-n. If you type SPC in incremental regexp search, it matches any sequence of whitespace characters, including newlines. If you want to match just a space, type C-q SPC. You can control what a bare space matches by setting the variable searchwhitespace-regexp to the desired regexp. In some cases, adding characters to the regexp in an incremental regexp search can make the cursor move back and start again. For example, if you have searched for foo and you add \|bar, the cursor backs up in case the rst bar precedes the rst foo. See Section 12.5 [Regexps], page 97. Forward and backward regexp search are not symmetrical, because regexp matching in Emacs always operates forward, starting with the beginning of the regexp. Thus, forward regexp search scans forward, trying a forward match at each possible starting position. Backward regexp search scans backward, trying a forward match at each possible starting position. These search methods are not mirror images. Nonincremental search for a regexp is done with the commands re-searchforward and re-search-backward. You can invoke these with M-x, or by way of incremental regexp search with C-M-s RET and C-M-r RET. If you use the incremental regexp search commands with a prex argument, they perform ordinary string search, like isearch-forward and isearch-backward. See Section 12.1 [Incremental Search], page 91.

12.5 Syntax of Regular Expressions


This manual describes regular expression features that users typically use. See Section Regular Expressions in The Emacs Lisp Reference Manual , for additional features used mainly in Lisp programs. Regular expressions have a syntax in which a few characters are special constructs and the rest are ordinary. An ordinary character matches that same character and nothing else. The special characters are $^.*+?[\. The character ] is special if it ends a character alternative (see later). The character - is special inside a character alternative. Any other character appearing in a regular expression is ordinary, unless a \ precedes it. (When you use regular expressions in a Lisp program, each \ must be doubled, see the example near the end of this section.) For example, f is not a special character, so it is ordinary, and therefore f is a regular expression that matches the string f and no other string. (It does not match the string ff.) Likewise, o is a regular expression that matches only o. (When case distinctions are being ignored, these regexps also match F and O, but we consider this a generalization of the same string, rather than an exception.)

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Any two regular expressions a and b can be concatenated. The result is a regular expression which matches a string if a matches some amount of the beginning of that string and b matches the rest of the string. For example, concatenating the regular expressions f and o gives the regular expression fo, which matches only the string fo. Still trivial. To do something nontrivial, you need to use one of the special characters. Here is a list of them. . (Period) is a special character that matches any single character except a newline. For example, the regular expressions a.b matches any threecharacter string that begins with a and ends with b. is not a construct by itself; it is a postx operator that means to match the preceding regular expression repetitively any number of times, as many times as possible. Thus, o* matches any number of os, including no os. * always applies to the smallest possible preceding expression. Thus, fo* has a repeating o, not a repeating fo. It matches f, fo, foo, and so on. The matcher processes a * construct by matching, immediately, as many repetitions as can be found. Then it continues with the rest of the pattern. If that fails, backtracking occurs, discarding some of the matches of the *-modied construct in case that makes it possible to match the rest of the pattern. For example, in matching ca*ar against the string caaar, the a* rst tries to match all three as; but the rest of the pattern is ar and there is only r left to match, so this try fails. The next alternative is for a* to match only two as. With this choice, the rest of the regexp matches successfully. + is a postx operator, similar to * except that it must match the preceding expression at least once. Thus, ca+r matches the strings car and caaaar but not the string cr, whereas ca*r matches all three strings. is a postx operator, similar to * except that it can match the preceding expression either once or not at all. Thus, ca?r matches car or cr, and nothing else. are non-greedy variants of the operators above. The normal operators *, +, ? match as much as they can, as long as the overall regexp can still match. With a following ?, they will match as little as possible. Thus, both ab* and ab*? can match the string a and the string abbbb; but if you try to match them both against the text abbb, ab* will match it all (the longest valid match), while ab*? will match just a (the shortest valid match). Non-greedy operators match the shortest possible string starting at a given starting point; in a forward search, though, the earliest possible starting point for match is always the one chosen. Thus, if you search

*?, +?, ??

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for a.*?$ against the text abbab followed by a newline, it matches the whole string. Since it can match starting at the rst a, it does. \{n \} is a postx operator specifying n repetitionsthat is, the preceding regular expression must match exactly n times in a row. For example, x\{4\} matches the string xxxx and nothing else. is a postx operator specifying between n and m repetitionsthat is, the preceding regular expression must match at least n times, but no more than m times. If m is omitted, then there is no upper limit, but the preceding regular expression must match at least n times. \{0,1\} is equivalent to ?. \{0,\} is equivalent to *. \{1,\} is equivalent to +. is a character set, beginning with [ and terminated by ]. In the simplest case, the characters between the two brackets are what this set can match. Thus, [ad] matches either one a or one d, and [ad]* matches any string composed of just as and ds (including the empty string). It follows that c[ad]*r matches cr, car, cdr, caddaar, etc. You can also include character ranges in a character set, by writing the starting and ending characters with a - between them. Thus, [a-z] matches any lower-case ASCII letter. Ranges may be intermixed freely with individual characters, as in [a-z$%.], which matches any lowercase ASCII letter or $, % or period. You can also include certain special character classes in a character set. A [: and balancing :] enclose a character class inside a character alternative. For instance, [[:alnum:]] matches any letter or digit. See Section Char Classes in The Emacs Lisp Reference Manual , for a list of character classes. To include a ] in a character set, you must make it the rst character. For example, []a] matches ] or a. To include a -, write - as the rst or last character of the set, or put it after a range. Thus, []-] matches both ] and -. To include ^ in a set, put it anywhere but at the beginning of the set. (At the beginning, it complements the setsee below.) When you use a range in case-insensitive search, you should write both ends of the range in upper case, or both in lower case, or both should be non-letters. The behavior of a mixed-case range such as A-z is somewhat ill-dened, and it may change in future Emacs versions. [^ ... ] [^ begins a complemented character set, which matches any character except the ones specied. Thus, [^a-z0-9A-Z] matches all characters except ASCII letters and digits.

\{n,m \}

[ ... ]

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^ is not special in a character set unless it is the rst character. The character following the ^ is treated as if it were rst (in other words, - and ] are not special there). A complemented character set can match a newline, unless newline is mentioned as one of the characters not to match. This is in contrast to the handling of regexps in programs such as grep. ^ is a special character that matches the empty string, but only at the beginning of a line in the text being matched. Otherwise it fails to match anything. Thus, ^foo matches a foo that occurs at the beginning of a line. For historical compatibility reasons, ^ can be used with this meaning only at the beginning of the regular expression, or after \( or \|. $ is similar to ^ but matches only at the end of a line. Thus, x+$ matches a string of one x or more at the end of a line. For historical compatibility reasons, $ can be used with this meaning only at the end of the regular expression, or before \) or \|. \ has two functions: it quotes the special characters (including \), and it introduces additional special constructs. Because \ quotes special characters, \$ is a regular expression that matches only $, and \[ is a regular expression that matches only [, and so on. See the following section for the special constructs that begin with \. Note: for historical compatibility, special characters are treated as ordinary ones if they are in contexts where their special meanings make no sense. For example, *foo treats * as ordinary since there is no preceding expression on which the * can act. It is poor practice to depend on this behavior; it is better to quote the special character anyway, regardless of where it appears. As a \ is not special inside a character alternative, it can never remove the special meaning of - or ]. So you should not quote these characters when they have no special meaning either. This would not clarify anything, since backslashes can legitimately precede these characters where they have special meaning, as in [^\] ("[^\\]" for Lisp string syntax), which matches any single character except a backslash.

12.6 Backslash in Regular Expressions


For the most part, \ followed by any character matches only that character. However, there are several exceptions: two-character sequences starting with \ that have special meanings. The second character in the sequence is always an ordinary character when used on its own. Here is a table of \ constructs. \| species an alternative. Two regular expressions a and b with \| in between form an expression that matches some text if either a matches

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it or b matches it. It works by trying to match a, and if that fails, by trying to match b. Thus, foo\|bar matches either foo or bar but no other string. \| applies to the largest possible surrounding expressions. Only a surrounding \( ... \) grouping can limit the grouping power of \|. Full backtracking capability exists to handle multiple uses of \|. \( ... \) is a grouping construct that serves three purposes: 1. To enclose a set of \| alternatives for other operations. Thus, \(foo\|bar\)x matches either foox or barx. 2. To enclose a complicated expression for the postx operators *, + and ? to operate on. Thus, ba\(na\)* matches bananana, etc., with any (zero or more) number of na strings. 3. To record a matched substring for future reference. This last application is not a consequence of the idea of a parenthetical grouping; it is a separate feature that is assigned as a second meaning to the same \( ... \) construct. In practice there is usually no conict between the two meanings; when there is a conict, you can use a shy group. \(?: ... \) species a shy group that does not record the matched substring; you cant refer back to it with \d . This is useful in mechanically combining regular expressions, so that you can add groups for syntactic purposes without interfering with the numbering of the groups that are meant to be referred to. \d matches the same text that matched the d th occurrence of a \( ... \) construct. This is called a back reference. After the end of a \( ... \) construct, the matcher remembers the beginning and end of the text matched by that construct. Then, later on in the regular expression, you can use \ followed by the digit d to mean match the same text matched the d th time by the \( ... \) construct. The strings matching the rst nine \( ... \) constructs appearing in a regular expression are assigned numbers 1 through 9 in the order that the open-parentheses appear in the regular expression. So you can use \1 through \9 to refer to the text matched by the corresponding \( ... \) constructs. For example, \(.*\)\1 matches any newline-free string that is composed of two identical halves. The \(.*\) matches the rst half, which may be anything, but the \1 that follows must match the same exact text. If a particular \( ... \) construct matches more than once (which can easily happen if it is followed by *), only the last match is recorded.

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matches the empty string, but only at the beginning of the string or buer (or its accessible portion) being matched against. matches the empty string, but only at the end of the string or buer (or its accessible portion) being matched against. matches the empty string, but only at point. matches the empty string, but only at the beginning or end of a word. Thus, \bfoo\b matches any occurrence of foo as a separate word. \bballs?\b matches ball or balls as a separate word. \b matches at the beginning or end of the buer regardless of what text appears next to it. matches the empty string, but not at the beginning or end of a word. matches the empty string, but only at the beginning of a word. \< matches at the beginning of the buer only if a word-constituent character follows. matches the empty string, but only at the end of a word. \> matches at the end of the buer only if the contents end with a word-constituent character. matches any word-constituent character. The syntax table determines which characters these are. See Section Syntax Tables in The Emacs Lisp Reference Manual . matches any character that is not a word-constituent. matches the empty string, but only at the beginning of a symbol. A symbol is a sequence of one or more symbol-constituent characters. A symbol-constituent character is a character whose syntax is either w or _. \_< matches at the beginning of the buer only if a symbolconstituent character follows. matches the empty string, but only at the end of a symbol. \_> matches at the end of the buer only if the contents end with a symbolconstituent character. matches any character whose syntax is c. Here c is a character that designates a particular syntax class: thus, w for word constituent, - or for whitespace, . for ordinary punctuation, etc. See Section Syntax Tables in The Emacs Lisp Reference Manual . matches any character whose syntax is not c. matches any character that belongs to the category c. For example, \cc matches Chinese characters, \cg matches Greek characters, etc. For the description of the known categories, type M-x describe-categories RET. matches any character that does not belong to category c.

\B \<

\>

\w

\W \_<

\_>

\sc

\Sc \cc

\Cc

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The constructs that pertain to words and syntax are controlled by the setting of the syntax table. See Section Syntax Tables in The Emacs Lisp Reference Manual .

12.7 Regular Expression Example


Here is an example of a regexpsimilar to the regexp that Emacs uses, by default, to recognize the end of a sentence, not including the following space (i.e., the variable sentence-end-base): [.?!][]\")}]* This contains two parts in succession: a character set matching period, ?, or !, and a character set matching close-brackets, quotes, or parentheses, repeated zero or more times.

12.8 Searching and Case


Searches in Emacs normally ignore the case of the text they are searching through, if you specify the text in lower case. Thus, if you specify searching for foo, then Foo and foo also match. Regexps, and in particular character sets, behave likewise: [ab] matches a or A or b or B. An upper-case letter anywhere in the incremental search string makes the search case-sensitive. Thus, searching for Foo does not nd foo or FOO. This applies to regular expression search as well as to string search. The eect ceases if you delete the upper-case letter from the search string. Typing M-c within an incremental search toggles the case sensitivity of that search. The eect does not extend beyond the current incremental search to the next one, but it does override the eect of adding or removing an upper-case letter in the current search. If you set the variable case-fold-search to nil, then all letters must match exactly, including case. This is a per-buer variable; altering the variable normally aects only the current buer, unless you change its default value. See Section 33.2.3 [Locals], page 446. This variable applies to nonincremental searches also, including those performed by the replace commands (see Section 12.9 [Replace], page 103) and the minibuer history matching commands (see Section 5.4 [Minibuer History], page 34). Several related variables control case-sensitivity of searching and matching for specic commands or activities. For instance, tags-case-fold-search controls case sensitivity for find-tag. To nd these variables, do M-x apropos-variable RET case-fold-search RET.

12.9 Replacement Commands


Emacs provides several commands for performing search-and-replace operations. In addition to the simple M-x replace-string command, there is M-% (queryreplace), which presents each occurrence of the pattern and asks you whether to replace it.

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The replace commands normally operate on the text from point to the end of the buer. When the region is active, they operate on it instead (see Chapter 8 [Mark], page 47). The basic replace commands replace one search string (or regexp) with one replacement string. It is possible to perform several replacements in parallel, using the command expand-region-abbrevs (see Section 26.3 [Expanding Abbrevs], page 323). 12.9.1 Unconditional Replacement M-x replace-string RET string RET newstring RET Replace every occurrence of string with newstring. To replace every instance of foo after point with bar, use the command M-x replace-string with the two arguments foo and bar. Replacement happens only in the text after point, so if you want to cover the whole buer you must go to the beginning rst. All occurrences up to the end of the buer are replaced; to limit replacement to part of the buer, activate the region around that part. When the region is active, replacement is limited to the region (see Chapter 8 [Mark], page 47). When replace-string exits, it leaves point at the last occurrence replaced. It adds the prior position of point (where the replace-string command was issued) to the mark ring, without activating the mark; use C-u C-SPC to move back there. See Section 8.4 [Mark Ring], page 51. A prex argument restricts replacement to matches that are surrounded by word boundaries. See Section 12.9.3 [Replacement and Case], page 105, for details about casesensitivity in replace commands. 12.9.2 Regexp Replacement The M-x replace-string command replaces exact matches for a single string. The similar command M-x replace-regexp replaces any match for a specied pattern. M-x replace-regexp RET regexp RET newstring RET Replace every match for regexp with newstring. In replace-regexp, the newstring need not be constant: it can refer to all or part of what is matched by the regexp. \& in newstring stands for the entire match being replaced. \d in newstring, where d is a digit, stands for whatever matched the d th parenthesized grouping in regexp. (This is called a back reference.) \# refers to the count of replacements already made in this command, as a decimal number. In the rst replacement, \# stands for 0; in the second, for 1; and so on. For example, M-x replace-regexp RET c[ad]+r RET \&-safe RET replaces (for example) cadr with cadr-safe and cddr with cddr-safe. M-x replace-regexp RET \(c[ad]+r\)-safe RET \1 RET performs the inverse transformation. To include a \ in the text to replace with, you must enter \\.

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If you want to enter part of the replacement string by hand each time, use \? in the replacement string. Each replacement will ask you to edit the replacement string in the minibuer, putting point where the \? was. The remainder of this subsection is intended for specialized tasks and requires knowledge of Lisp. Most readers can skip it. You can use Lisp expressions to calculate parts of the replacement string. To do this, write \, followed by the expression in the replacement string. Each replacement calculates the value of the expression and converts it to text without quoting (if its a string, this means using the strings contents), and uses it in the replacement string in place of the expression itself. If the expression is a symbol, one space in the replacement string after the symbol name goes with the symbol name, so the value replaces them both. Inside such an expression, you can use some special sequences. \& and \n refer here, as usual, to the entire match as a string, and to a submatch as a string. n may be multiple digits, and the value of \n is nil if subexpression n did not match. You can also use \#& and \#n to refer to those matches as numbers (this is valid when the match or submatch has the form of a numeral). \# here too stands for the number of already-completed replacements. Repeating our example to exchange x and y, we can thus do it also this way: M-x replace-regexp RET \(x\)\|y RET \,(if \1 "y" "x") RET For computing replacement strings for \,, the format function is often useful (see Section Formatting Strings in The Emacs Lisp Reference Manual ). For example, to add consecutively numbered strings like ABC00042 to columns 73 to 80 (unless they are already occupied), you can use M-x replace-regexp RET ^.\{0,72\}$ RET \,(format "%-72sABC%05d" \& \#) RET 12.9.3 Replace Commands and Case If the rst argument of a replace command is all lower case, the command ignores case while searching for occurrences to replaceprovided case-fold-search is nonnil. If case-fold-search is set to nil, case is always signicant in all searches. In addition, when the newstring argument is all or partly lower case, replacement commands try to preserve the case pattern of each occurrence. Thus, the command M-x replace-string RET foo RET bar RET replaces a lower case foo with a lower case bar, an all-caps FOO with BAR, and a capitalized Foo with Bar. (These three alternativeslower case, all caps, and capitalized, are the only ones that replace-string can distinguish.) If upper-case letters are used in the replacement string, they remain upper case every time that text is inserted. If upper-case letters are used in the rst argument, the second argument is always substituted exactly as given, with no case conversion. Likewise, if either case-replace or case-fold-search is set to nil, replacement is done without case conversion.

Chapter 12: Searching and Replacement 12.9.4 Query Replace M-% string RET newstring RET Replace some occurrences of string with newstring. C-M-% regexp RET newstring RET Replace some matches for regexp with newstring.

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If you want to change only some of the occurrences of foo to bar, not all of them, use M-% (query-replace). This command nds occurrences of foo one by one, displays each occurrence and asks you whether to replace it. Aside from querying, query-replace works just like replace-string (see Section 12.9.1 [Unconditional Replace], page 104). In particular, it preserves case provided case-replace is non-nil, as it normally is (see Section 12.9.3 [Replacement and Case], page 105). A numeric argument means to consider only occurrences that are bounded by worddelimiter characters. C-M-% performs regexp search and replace (query-replace-regexp). It works like replace-regexp except that it queries like query-replace. These commands highlight the current match using the face query-replace. They highlight other matches using lazy-highlight just like incremental search (see Section 12.1 [Incremental Search], page 91). By default, query-replaceregexp will show the substituted replacement string for the current match in the minibuer. If you want to keep special sequences \& and \n unexpanded, customize query-replace-show-replacement variable. The characters you can type when you are shown a match for the string or regexp are: SPC DEL to replace the occurrence with newstring. to skip to the next occurrence without replacing this one.

, (Comma) to replace this occurrence and display the result. You are then asked for another input character to say what to do next. Since the replacement has already been made, DEL and SPC are equivalent in this situation; both move to the next occurrence. You can type C-r at this point (see below) to alter the replaced text. You can also type C-x u to undo the replacement; this exits the queryreplace, so if you want to do further replacement you must use C-x ESC ESC RET to restart (see Section 5.5 [Repetition], page 35). RET . (Period) ! ^ to exit without doing any more replacements. to replace this occurrence and then exit without searching for more occurrences. to replace all remaining occurrences without asking again. to go back to the position of the previous occurrence (or what used to be an occurrence), in case you changed it by mistake or want to reexamine it.

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to enter a recursive editing level, in case the occurrence needs to be edited rather than just replaced with newstring. When you are done, exit the recursive editing level with C-M-c to proceed to the next occurrence. See Section 31.9 [Recursive Edit], page 424. to delete the occurrence, and then enter a recursive editing level as in C-r. Use the recursive edit to insert text to replace the deleted occurrence of string. When done, exit the recursive editing level with C-M-c to proceed to the next occurrence. to edit the replacement string in the minibuer. When you exit the minibuer by typing RET, the minibuer contents replace the current occurrence of the pattern. They also become the new replacement string for any further occurrences. to redisplay the screen. Then you must type another character to specify what to do with this occurrence. to display a message summarizing these options. Then you must type another character to specify what to do with this occurrence.

C-w

C-l C-h

Some other characters are aliases for the ones listed above: y, n and q are equivalent to SPC, DEL and RET. Aside from this, any other character exits the query-replace, and is then reread as part of a key sequence. Thus, if you type C-k, it exits the query-replace and then kills to end of line. To restart a query-replace once it is exited, use C-x ESC ESC, which repeats the query-replace because it used the minibuer to read its arguments. See Section 5.5 [Repetition], page 35. See Section 27.7 [Operating on Files], page 335, for the Dired Q command which performs query replace on selected les. See also Section 27.9 [Transforming File Names], page 338, for Dired commands to rename, copy, or link les by replacing regexp matches in le names.

12.10 Other Search-and-Loop Commands


Here are some other commands that nd matches for a regular expression. They all ignore case in matching, if the pattern contains no upper-case letters and casefold-search is non-nil. Aside from occur and its variants, all operate on the text from point to the end of the buer, or on the region if it is active. M-x multi-isearch-buffers Prompt for one or more buer names, ending with RET; then, begin a multi-buer incremental search in those buers. (If the search fails in one buer, the next C-s tries searching the next specied buer, and so forth.) With a prex argument, prompt for a regexp and begin a multi-buer incremental search in buers matching that regexp. M-x multi-isearch-buffers-regexp This command is just like multi-isearch-buffers, except it performs an incremental regexp search.

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Prompt for a regexp, and display a list showing each line in the buer that contains a match for it. To limit the search to part of the buer, narrow to that part (see Section 11.5 [Narrowing], page 74). A numeric argument n species that n lines of context are to be displayed before and after each matching line. In the *Occur* buer, you can click on each entry, or move point there and type RET, to visit the corresponding position in the buer that was searched. o and C-o display the match in another window; C-o does not select it. Alternatively, you can use the C-x (nexterror) command to visit the occurrences one by one (see Section 24.2 [Compilation Mode], page 272). Typing e in the *Occur* buer switches to Occur Edit mode, in which edits made to the entries are also applied to the text in the originating buer. Type C-c C-c to return to Occur mode. The command M-x list-matching-lines is a synonym for M-x occur.

M-s o

Run occur using the search string of the last incremental string search. You can also run M-s o when an incremental search is active; this uses the current search string.

M-x multi-occur This command is just like occur, except it is able to search through multiple buers. It asks you to specify the buer names one by one. M-x multi-occur-in-matching-buffers This command is similar to multi-occur, except the buers to search are specied by a regular expression that matches visited le names. With a prex argument, it uses the regular expression to match buer names instead. M-x how-many Prompt for a regexp, and print the number of matches for it in the buer after point. If the region is active, this operates on the region instead. M-x flush-lines Prompt for a regexp, and delete each line that contains a match for it, operating on the text after point. This command deletes the current line if it contains a match starting after point. If the region is active, it operates on the region instead; if a line partially contained in the region contains a match entirely contained in the region, it is deleted. If a match is split across lines, flush-lines deletes all those lines. It deletes the lines before starting to look for the next match; hence, it ignores a match starting on the same line at which another match ended.

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M-x keep-lines Prompt for a regexp, and delete each line that does not contain a match for it, operating on the text after point. If point is not at the beginning of a line, this command always keeps the current line. If the region is active, the command operates on the region instead; it never deletes lines that are only partially contained in the region (a newline that ends a line counts as part of that line). If a match is split across lines, this command keeps all those lines.

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13 Commands for Fixing Typos


In this chapter we describe commands that are useful when you catch a mistake while editing. The most fundamental of these commands is the undo command C-/ (also bound to C-x u and C-_). This undoes a single command, or a part of a command (as in the case of query-replace), or several consecutive character insertions. Consecutive repetitions of C-/ undo earlier and earlier changes, back to the limit of the undo information available. Aside from the commands described here, you can erase text using deletion commands such as DEL (delete-backward-char). These were described earlier in this manual. See Section 4.3 [Erasing], page 20.

13.1 Undo
The undo command reverses recent changes in the buers text. Each buer records changes individually, and the undo command always applies to the current buer. You can undo all the changes in a buer for as far back as the buers records go. Usually, each editing command makes a separate entry in the undo records, but some commands such as query-replace divide their changes into multiple entries for exibility in undoing. Consecutive character insertion commands are usually grouped together into a single undo record, to make undoing less tedious. C-/ C-x u C-_

Undo one entry in the current buers undo records (undo).

To begin to undo, type C-/ (or its aliases, C-_ or C-x u)1 . This undoes the most recent change in the buer, and moves point back to where it was before that change. Consecutive repetitions of C-/ (or its aliases) undo earlier and earlier changes in the current buer. If all the recorded changes have already been undone, the undo command signals an error. Any command other than an undo command breaks the sequence of undo commands. Starting from that moment, the entire sequence of undo commands that you have just performed are themselves placed into the undo record, as a single set of changes. Therefore, to re-apply changes you have undone, type C-f or any other command that harmlessly breaks the sequence of undoing; then type C-/ to undo the undo command. Alternatively, if you want to resume undoing, without redoing previous undo commands, use M-x undo-only. This is like undo, but will not redo changes you have just undone. If you notice that a buer has been modied accidentally, the easiest way to recover is to type C-/ repeatedly until the stars disappear from the front of the mode line (see Section 1.3 [Mode Line], page 8). Whenever an undo command
1

Aside from C-/, the undo command is also bound to C-x u because that is more straightforward for beginners to remember: u stands for undo. It is also bound to C-_ because typing C-/ on some text terminals actually enters C-_.

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makes the stars disappear from the mode line, it means that the buer contents are the same as they were when the le was last read in or saved. If you do not remember whether you changed the buer deliberately, type C-/ once. When you see the last change you made undone, you will see whether it was an intentional change. If it was an accident, leave it undone. If it was deliberate, redo the change as described above. When there is an active region, any use of undo performs selective undo : it undoes the most recent change within the region, instead of the entire buer. However, when Transient Mark mode is o (see Section 8.7 [Disabled Transient Mark], page 52), C-/ always operates on the entire buer, ignoring the region. In this case, you can perform selective undo by supplying a prex argument to the undo command: C-u C-/. To undo further changes in the same region, repeat the undo command (no prex argument is needed). Some specialized buers do not make undo records. Buers whose names start with spaces never do; these buers are used internally by Emacs to hold text that users dont normally look at or edit. When the undo information for a buer becomes too large, Emacs discards the oldest records from time to time (during garbage collection). You can specify how much undo information to keep by setting the variables undo-limit, undo-stronglimit, and undo-outer-limit. Their values are expressed in bytes. The variable undo-limit sets a soft limit: Emacs keeps undo data for enough commands to reach this size, and perhaps exceed it, but does not keep data for any earlier commands beyond that. Its default value is 80000. The variable undostrong-limit sets a stricter limit: any previous command (though not the most recent one) that pushes the size past this amount is forgotten. The default value of undo-strong-limit is 120000. Regardless of the values of those variables, the most recent change is never discarded unless it gets bigger than undo-outer-limit (normally 12,000,000). At that point, Emacs discards the undo data and warns you about it. This is the only situation in which you cannot undo the last command. If this happens, you can increase the value of undo-outer-limit to make it even less likely to happen in the future. But if you didnt expect the command to create such large undo data, then it is probably a bug and you should report it. See Section 34.3 [Reporting Bugs], page 473.

13.2 Transposing Text


C-t M-t C-M-t C-x C-t Transpose two characters (transpose-chars). Transpose two words (transpose-words). Transpose two balanced expressions (transpose-sexps). Transpose two lines (transpose-lines).

The common error of transposing two characters can be xed, when they are adjacent, with the C-t command (transpose-chars). Normally, C-t transposes the two characters on either side of point. When given at the end of a line, rather

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than transposing the last character of the line with the newline, which would be useless, C-t transposes the last two characters on the line. So, if you catch your transposition error right away, you can x it with just a C-t. If you dont catch it so fast, you must move the cursor back between the two transposed characters before you type C-t. If you transposed a space with the last character of the word before it, the word motion commands are a good way of getting there. Otherwise, a reverse search (C-r) is often the best way. See Chapter 12 [Search], page 91. M-t transposes the word before point with the word after point (transposewords). It moves point forward over a word, dragging the word preceding or containing point forward as well. The punctuation characters between the words do not move. For example, FOO, BAR transposes into BAR, FOO rather than BAR FOO,. C-M-t (transpose-sexps) is a similar command for transposing two expressions (see Section 23.4.1 [Expressions], page 256), and C-x C-t (transpose-lines) exchanges lines. They work like M-t except as regards what units of text they transpose. A numeric argument to a transpose command serves as a repeat count: it tells the transpose command to move the character (word, expression, line) before or containing point across several other characters (words, expressions, lines). For example, C-u 3 C-t moves the character before point forward across three other characters. It would change f oobar into oobf ar. This is equivalent to repeating C-t three times. C-u - 4 M-t moves the word before point backward across four words. C-u - C-M-t would cancel the eect of plain C-M-t. A numeric argument of zero is assigned a special meaning (because otherwise a command with a repeat count of zero would do nothing): to transpose the character (word, expression, line) ending after point with the one ending after the mark.

13.3 Case Conversion


M-- M-l M-- M-u M-- M-c Convert last word to lower case. Note Meta-- is Meta-minus. Convert last word to all upper case. Convert last word to lower case with capital initial.

A very common error is to type words in the wrong case. Because of this, the word case-conversion commands M-l, M-u and M-c have a special feature when used with a negative argument: they do not move the cursor. As soon as you see you have mistyped the last word, you can simply case-convert it and go on typing. See Section 22.6 [Case], page 223.

13.4 Checking and Correcting Spelling


This section describes the commands to check the spelling of a single word or of a portion of a buer. These commands only work if the spelling checker program Aspell, Ispell or Hunspell is installed. These programs are not part of Emacs, but one of them is usually installed in GNU/Linux and other free operating systems.

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Check and correct spelling of the word at point (ispell-word). If the region is active, do it for all words in the region instead.

M-x ispell Check and correct spelling of all words in the buer. If the region is active, do it for all words in the region instead. M-x ispell-buffer Check and correct spelling in the buer. M-x ispell-region Check and correct spelling in the region. M-x ispell-message Check and correct spelling in a draft mail message, excluding cited material. M-x ispell-change-dictionary RET dict RET Restart the Aspell/Ispell/Hunspell process, using dict as the dictionary. M-x ispell-kill-ispell Kill the Aspell/Ispell/Hunspell subprocess. M-TAB ESC TAB Complete the word before point based on the spelling dictionary (ispell-complete-word).

M-x flyspell-mode Enable Flyspell mode, which highlights all misspelled words. M-x flyspell-prog-mode Enable Flyspell mode for comments and strings only. To check the spelling of the word around or before point, and optionally correct it as well, type M-$ (ispell-word). If a region is active, M-$ checks the spelling of all words within the region. See Chapter 8 [Mark], page 47. (When Transient Mark mode is o, M-$ always acts on the word around or before point, ignoring the region; see Section 8.7 [Disabled Transient Mark], page 52.) Similarly, the command M-x ispell performs spell-checking in the region if one is active, or in the entire buer otherwise. The commands M-x ispell-buffer and M-x ispell-region explicitly perform spell-checking on the entire buer or the region respectively. To check spelling in an email message you are writing, use M-x ispell-message; that command checks the whole buer, except for material that is indented or appears to be cited from other messages. See Chapter 29 [Sending Mail], page 367. When one of these commands encounters what appears to be an incorrect word, it asks you what to do. It usually displays a list of numbered near-misses words that are close to the incorrect word. Then you must type a single-character response. Here are the valid responses: digit Replace the word, just this time, with one of the displayed near-misses. Each near-miss is listed with a digit; type that digit to select it.

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Skip this wordcontinue to consider it incorrect, but dont change it here. Replace the word, just this time, with new. (The replacement string will be rescanned for more spelling errors.) Replace the word with new, and do a query-replace so you can replace it elsewhere in the buer if you wish. (The replacements will be rescanned for more spelling errors.) Accept the incorrect wordtreat it as correct, but only in this editing session. Accept the incorrect wordtreat it as correct, but only in this editing session and for this buer. Insert this word in your private dictionary le so that Aspell or Ispell or Hunspell will consider it correct from now on, even in future sessions. Like i, but you can also specify dictionary completion information. Insert the lower-case version of this word in your private dictionary le.

a A i m u

l word RET Look in the dictionary for words that match word. These words become the new list of near-misses; you can select one of them as the replacement by typing a digit. You can use * in word as a wildcard. C-g X Quit interactive spell checking, leaving point at the word that was being checked. You can restart checking again afterward with C-u M-$. Quit interactive spell checking and move point back to where it was when you started spell checking. Quit interactive spell checking and kill the spell-checker subprocess. Show the list of options.

x q ?

In Text mode and related modes, M-TAB (ispell-complete-word) performs inbuer completion based on spelling correction. Insert the beginning of a word, and then type M-TAB; this shows a list of completions. (If your window manager intercepts M-TAB, type ESC TAB or C-M-i.) Each completion is listed with a digit or character; type that digit or character to choose it. Once started, the Aspell or Ispell or Hunspell subprocess continues to run, waiting for something to do, so that subsequent spell checking commands complete more quickly. If you want to get rid of the process, use M-x ispell-kill-ispell. This is not usually necessary, since the process uses no processor time except when you do spelling correction. Ispell, Aspell and Hunspell look up spelling in two dictionaries: the standard dictionary and your personal dictionary. The standard dictionary is specied by

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the variable ispell-local-dictionary or, if that is nil, by the variable ispelldictionary. If both are nil, the spelling programs default dictionary is used. The command M-x ispell-change-dictionary sets the standard dictionary for the buer and then restarts the subprocess, so that it will use a dierent standard dictionary. Your personal dictionary is specied by the variable ispell-personaldictionary. If that is nil, the spelling program looks for a personal dictionary in a default location. A separate dictionary is used for word completion. The variable ispellcomplete-word-dict species the le name of this dictionary. The completion dictionary must be dierent because it cannot use root and ax information. For some languages, there is a spell checking dictionary but no word completion dictionary. Flyspell mode is a minor mode that performs automatic spell checking as you type. When it nds a word that it does not recognize, it highlights that word. Type M-x flyspell-mode to toggle Flyspell mode in the current buer. To enable Flyspell mode in all text mode buers, add flyspell-mode to text-mode-hook. See Section 33.2.2 [Hooks], page 445. When Flyspell mode highlights a word as misspelled, you can click on it with Mouse-2 to display a menu of possible corrections and actions. You can also correct the word by editing it manually in any way you like. Flyspell Prog mode works just like ordinary Flyspell mode, except that it only checks words in comments and string constants. This feature is useful for editing programs. Type M-x flyspell-prog-mode to enable or disable this mode in the current buer. To enable this mode in all programming mode buers, add flyspell-prog-mode to prog-mode-hook (see Section 33.2.2 [Hooks], page 445).

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14 Keyboard Macros
In this chapter we describe how to record a sequence of editing commands so you can repeat it conveniently later. A keyboard macro is a command dened by an Emacs user to stand for another sequence of keys. For example, if you discover that you are about to type C-n M-d C-d forty times, you can speed your work by dening a keyboard macro to do C-n M-d C-d, and then executing it 39 more times. You dene a keyboard macro by executing and recording the commands which are its denition. Put dierently, as you dene a keyboard macro, the denition is being executed for the rst time. This way, you can see the eects of your commands, so that you dont have to gure them out in your head. When you close the denition, the keyboard macro is dened and also has been, in eect, executed once. You can then do the whole thing over again by invoking the macro. Keyboard macros dier from ordinary Emacs commands in that they are written in the Emacs command language rather than in Lisp. This makes it easier for the novice to write them, and makes them more convenient as temporary hacks. However, the Emacs command language is not powerful enough as a programming language to be useful for writing anything intelligent or general. For such things, Lisp must be used.

14.1 Basic Use


F3 F4 C-u F3 Start dening a keyboard macro (kmacro-start-macro-or-insertcounter). If a keyboard macro is being dened, end the denition; otherwise, execute the most recent keyboard macro (kmacro-end-or-call-macro). Re-execute last keyboard macro, then append keys to its denition.

C-u C-u F3 Append keys to the last keyboard macro without re-executing it. C-x C-k r Run the last keyboard macro on each line that begins in the region (apply-macro-to-region-lines).

To start dening a keyboard macro, type F3. From then on, your keys continue to be executed, but also become part of the denition of the macro. Def appears in the mode line to remind you of what is going on. When you are nished, type F4 (kmacro-end-or-call-macro) to terminate the denition. For example, F3 M-f foo F4 denes a macro to move forward a word and then insert foo. Note that F3 and F4 do not become part of the macro. After dening the macro, you can call it with F4. For the above example, this has the same eect as typing M-f foo again. (Note the two roles of the F4 command: it ends the macro if you are in the process of dening one, or calls the last macro otherwise.) You can also supply F4 with a numeric prex argument n,

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which means to invoke the macro n times. An argument of zero repeats the macro indenitely, until it gets an error or you type C-g (or, on MS-DOS, C-BREAK). The above example demonstrates a handy trick that you can employ with keyboard macros: if you wish to repeat an operation at regularly spaced places in the text, include a motion command as part of the macro. In this case, repeating the macro inserts the string foo after each successive word. After terminating the denition of a keyboard macro, you can append more keystrokes to its denition by typing C-u F3. This is equivalent to plain F3 followed by retyping the whole denition so far. As a consequence, it re-executes the macro as previously dened. If you change the variable kmacro-execute-before-append to nil, the existing macro will not be re-executed before appending to it (the default is t). You can also add to the end of the denition of the last keyboard macro without re-executing it by typing C-u C-u F3. When a command reads an argument with the minibuer, your minibuer input becomes part of the macro along with the command. So when you replay the macro, the command gets the same argument as when you entered the macro. For example, F3 C-a C-k C-x b foo RET C-y C-x b RET F4 denes a macro that kills the current line, yanks it into the buer foo, then returns to the original buer. Most keyboard commands work as usual in a keyboard macro denition, with some exceptions. Typing C-g (keyboard-quit) quits the keyboard macro denition. Typing C-M-c (exit-recursive-edit) can be unreliable: it works as youd expect if exiting a recursive edit that started within the macro, but if it exits a recursive edit that started before you invoked the keyboard macro, it also necessarily exits the keyboard macro too. Mouse events are also unreliable, even though you can use them in a keyboard macro: when the macro replays the mouse event, it uses the original mouse position of that event, the position that the mouse had while you were dening the macro. The eect of this may be hard to predict. The command C-x C-k r (apply-macro-to-region-lines) repeats the last dened keyboard macro on each line that begins in the region. It does this line by line, by moving point to the beginning of the line and then executing the macro. In addition to the F3 and F4 commands described above, Emacs also supports an older set of key bindings for dening and executing keyboard macros. To begin a macro denition, type C-x ( (kmacro-start-macro); as with F3, a prex argument appends this denition to the last keyboard macro. To end a macro denition, type C-x ) (kmacro-end-macro). To execute the most recent macro, type C-x e (kmacro-end-and-call-macro). If you enter C-x e while dening a macro, the macro is terminated and executed immediately. Immediately after typing C-x e, you can type E repeatedly to immediately repeat the macro one or more times. You can also give C-x e a repeat argument, just like F4. C-x ) can be given a repeat count as an argument. This means to repeat the macro right after dening it. The macro denition itself counts as the rst repetition, since it is executed as you dene it, so C-u 4 C-x ) executes the macro immediately 3 additional times.

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14.2 The Keyboard Macro Ring


All dened keyboard macros are recorded in the keyboard macro ring. There is only one keyboard macro ring, shared by all buers. C-x C-k C-k Execute the keyboard macro at the head of the ring (kmacro-end-orcall-macro-repeat). C-x C-k C-n Rotate the keyboard macro ring to the next macro (dened earlier) (kmacro-cycle-ring-next). C-x C-k C-p Rotate the keyboard macro ring to the previous macro (dened later) (kmacro-cycle-ring-previous). All commands which operate on the keyboard macro ring use the same C-x C-k prex. Most of these commands can be executed and repeated immediately after each other without repeating the C-x C-k prex. For example, C-x C-k C-p C-p C-k C-k C-k C-n C-n C-k C-p C-k C-d will rotate the keyboard macro ring to the second previous macro, execute the resulting head macro three times, rotate back to the original head macro, execute that once, rotate to the previous macro, execute that, and nally delete it from the macro ring. The command C-x C-k C-k (kmacro-end-or-call-macro-repeat) executes the keyboard macro at the head of the macro ring. You can repeat the macro immediately by typing another C-k, or you can rotate the macro ring immediately by typing C-n or C-p. When a keyboard macro is being dened, C-x C-k C-k behaves like F4 except that, immediately afterward, you can use most key bindings of this section without the C-x C-k prex. For instance, another C-k will re-execute the macro. The commands C-x C-k C-n (kmacro-cycle-ring-next) and C-x C-k C-p (kmacro-cycle-ring-previous) rotate the macro ring, bringing the next or previous keyboard macro to the head of the macro ring. The denition of the new head macro is displayed in the echo area. You can continue to rotate the macro ring immediately by repeating just C-n and C-p until the desired macro is at the head of the ring. To execute the new macro ring head immediately, just type C-k. Note that Emacs treats the head of the macro ring as the last dened keyboard macro. For instance, F4 will execute that macro, and C-x C-k n will give it a name. The maximum number of macros stored in the keyboard macro ring is determined by the customizable variable kmacro-ring-max.

14.3 The Keyboard Macro Counter


Each keyboard macro has an associated counter, which is initialized to 0 when you start dening the macro. This counter allows you to insert a number into the buer that depends on the number of times the macro has been called. The counter is incremented each time its value is inserted into the buer.

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In a keyboard macro denition, insert the keyboard macro counter value in the buer (kmacro-start-macro-or-insert-counter). Insert the keyboard macro counter value in the buer (kmacroinsert-counter).

C-x C-k C-c Set the keyboard macro counter (kmacro-set-counter). C-x C-k C-a Add the prex arg to the keyboard macro counter (kmacro-addcounter). C-x C-k C-f Specify the format for inserting the keyboard macro counter (kmacroset-format). When you are dening a keyboard macro, the command F3 (kmacro-startmacro-or-insert-counter) inserts the current value of the keyboard macros counter into the buer, and increments the counter by 1. (If you are not dening a macro, F3 begins a macro denition instead. See Section 14.1 [Basic Keyboard Macro], page 116.) You can use a numeric prex argument to specify a dierent increment. If you just specify a C-u prex, that is the same as an increment of zero: it inserts the current counter value without changing it. As an example, let us show how the keyboard macro counter can be used to build a numbered list. Consider the following key sequence: F3 C-a F3 . SPC F4 As part of this keyboard macro denition, the string 0. was inserted into the beginning of the current line. If you now move somewhere else in the buer and type F4 to invoke the macro, the string 1. is inserted at the beginning of that line. Subsequent invocations insert 2. , 3. , and so forth. The command C-x C-k C-i (kmacro-insert-counter) does the same thing as F3, but it can be used outside a keyboard macro denition. When no keyboard macro is being dened or executed, it inserts and increments the counter of the macro at the head of the keyboard macro ring. The command C-x C-k C-c (kmacro-set-counter) sets the current macro counter to the value of the numeric argument. If you use it inside the macro, it operates on each repetition of the macro. If you specify just C-u as the prex, while executing the macro, that resets the counter to the value it had at the beginning of the current repetition of the macro (undoing any increments so far in this repetition). The command C-x C-k C-a (kmacro-add-counter) adds the prex argument to the current macro counter. With just C-u as argument, it resets the counter to the last value inserted by any keyboard macro. (Normally, when you use this, the last insertion will be in the same macro and it will be the same counter.) The command C-x C-k C-f (kmacro-set-format) prompts for the format to use when inserting the macro counter. The default format is %d, which means to insert

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the number in decimal without any padding. You can exit with empty minibuer to reset the format to this default. You can specify any format string that the format function accepts and that makes sense with a single integer extra argument (see Section Formatting Strings in The Emacs Lisp Reference Manual ). Do not put the format string inside double quotes when you insert it in the minibuer. If you use this command while no keyboard macro is being dened or executed, the new format aects all subsequent macro denitions. Existing macros continue to use the format in eect when they were dened. If you set the format while dening a keyboard macro, this aects the macro being dened from that point on, but it does not aect subsequent macros. Execution of the macro will, at each step, use the format in eect at that step during its denition. Changes to the macro format during execution of a macro, like the corresponding changes during its denition, have no eect on subsequent macros. The format set by C-x C-k C-f does not aect insertion of numbers stored in registers. If you use a register as a counter, incrementing it on each repetition of the macro, that accomplishes the same thing as a keyboard macro counter. See Section 10.5 [Number Registers], page 68. For most purposes, it is simpler to use a keyboard macro counter.

14.4 Executing Macros with Variations


In a keyboard macro, you can create an eect similar to that of query-replace, in that the macro asks you each time around whether to make a change. C-x q When this point is reached during macro execution, ask for conrmation (kbd-macro-query).

While dening the macro, type C-x q at the point where you want the query to occur. During macro denition, the C-x q does nothing, but when you run the macro later, C-x q asks you interactively whether to continue. The valid responses when C-x q asks are: SPC (or y) Continue executing the keyboard macro. DEL (or n) Skip the remainder of this repetition of the macro, and start right away with the next repetition. RET (or q) Skip the remainder of this repetition and cancel further repetitions. C-r Enter a recursive editing level, in which you can perform editing which is not part of the macro. When you exit the recursive edit using C-M-c, you are asked again how to continue with the keyboard macro. If you type a SPC at this time, the rest of the macro denition is executed. It is up to you to leave point and the text in a state such that the rest of the macro will do what you want.

C-u C-x q, which is C-x q with a numeric argument, performs a completely dierent function. It enters a recursive edit reading input from the keyboard, both when you type it during the denition of the macro, and when it is executed from

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the macro. During denition, the editing you do inside the recursive edit does not become part of the macro. During macro execution, the recursive edit gives you a chance to do some particularized editing on each repetition. See Section 31.9 [Recursive Edit], page 424.

14.5 Naming and Saving Keyboard Macros


C-x C-k n C-x C-k b Give a command name (for the duration of the Emacs session) to the most recently dened keyboard macro (kmacro-name-last-macro). Bind the most recently dened keyboard macro to a key sequence (for the duration of the session) (kmacro-bind-to-key).

M-x insert-kbd-macro Insert in the buer a keyboard macros denition, as Lisp code. If you wish to save a keyboard macro for later use, you can give it a name using C-x C-k n (kmacro-name-last-macro). This reads a name as an argument using the minibuer and denes that name to execute the last keyboard macro, in its current form. (If you later add to the denition of this macro, that does not alter the names denition as a macro.) The macro name is a Lisp symbol, and dening it in this way makes it a valid command name for calling with M-x or for binding a key to with global-set-key (see Section 33.3.1 [Keymaps], page 452). If you specify a name that has a prior denition other than a keyboard macro, an error message is shown and nothing is changed. You can also bind the last keyboard macro (in its current form) to a key, using C-x C-k b (kmacro-bind-to-key) followed by the key sequence you want to bind. You can bind to any key sequence in the global keymap, but since most key sequences already have other bindings, you should select the key sequence carefully. If you try to bind to a key sequence with an existing binding (in any keymap), this command asks you for conrmation before replacing the existing binding. To avoid problems caused by overriding existing bindings, the key sequences C-x C-k 0 through C-x C-k 9 and C-x C-k A through C-x C-k Z are reserved for your own keyboard macro bindings. In fact, to bind to one of these key sequences, you only need to type the digit or letter rather than the whole key sequences. For example, C-x C-k b 4 will bind the last keyboard macro to the key sequence C-x C-k 4. Once a macro has a command name, you can save its denition in a le. Then it can be used in another editing session. First, visit the le you want to save the denition in. Then use this command: M-x insert-kbd-macro RET macroname RET This inserts some Lisp code that, when executed later, will dene the same macro with the same denition it has now. (You need not understand Lisp code to do this, because insert-kbd-macro writes the Lisp code for you.) Then save the le. You can load the le later with load-file (see Section 24.8 [Lisp Libraries],

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page 287). If the le you save in is your init le ~/.emacs (see Section 33.4 [Init File], page 461) then the macro will be dened each time you run Emacs. If you give insert-kbd-macro a numeric argument, it makes additional Lisp code to record the keys (if any) that you have bound to macroname, so that the macro will be reassigned the same keys when you load the le.

14.6 Editing a Keyboard Macro


C-x C-k C-e Edit the last dened keyboard macro (kmacro-edit-macro). C-x C-k e name RET Edit a previously dened keyboard macro name (edit-kbd-macro). C-x C-k l Edit the last 300 keystrokes as a keyboard macro (kmacro-editlossage).

You can edit the last keyboard macro by typing C-x C-k C-e or C-x C-k RET (kmacro-edit-macro). This formats the macro denition in a buer and enters a specialized major mode for editing it. Type C-h m once in that buer to display details of how to edit the macro. When you are nished editing, type C-c C-c. You can edit a named keyboard macro or a macro bound to a key by typing C-x C-k e (edit-kbd-macro). Follow that with the keyboard input that you would use to invoke the macroC-x e or M-x name or some other key sequence. You can edit the last 300 keystrokes as a macro by typing C-x C-k l (kmacroedit-lossage).

14.7 Stepwise Editing a Keyboard Macro


You can interactively replay and edit the last keyboard macro, one command at a time, by typing C-x C-k SPC (kmacro-step-edit-macro). Unless you quit the macro using q or C-g, the edited macro replaces the last macro on the macro ring. This macro editing feature shows the last macro in the minibuer together with the rst (or next) command to be executed, and prompts you for an action. You can enter ? to get a summary of your options. These actions are available: SPC and y execute the current command, and advance to the next command in the keyboard macro. n, d, and DEL skip and delete the current command. f skips the current command in this execution of the keyboard macro, but doesnt delete it from the macro. TAB executes the current command, as well as all similar commands immediately following the current command; for example, TAB may be used to insert a sequence of characters (corresponding to a sequence of self-insert-command commands). c continues execution (without further editing) until the end of the keyboard macro. If execution terminates normally, the edited macro replaces the original keyboard macro.

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C-k skips and deletes the rest of the keyboard macro, terminates step-editing, and replaces the original keyboard macro with the edited macro. q and C-g cancels the step-editing of the keyboard macro; discarding any changes made to the keyboard macro. i KEY... C-j reads and executes a series of key sequences (not including the nal C-j), and inserts them before the current command in the keyboard macro, without advancing over the current command. I KEY... reads one key sequence, executes it, and inserts it before the current command in the keyboard macro, without advancing over the current command. r KEY... C-j reads and executes a series of key sequences (not including the nal C-j), and replaces the current command in the keyboard macro with them, advancing over the inserted key sequences. R KEY... reads one key sequence, executes it, and replaces the current command in the keyboard macro with that key sequence, advancing over the inserted key sequence. a KEY... C-j executes the current command, then reads and executes a series of key sequences (not including the nal C-j), and inserts them after the current command in the keyboard macro; it then advances over the current command and the inserted key sequences. A KEY... C-j executes the rest of the commands in the keyboard macro, then reads and executes a series of key sequences (not including the nal C-j), and appends them at the end of the keyboard macro; it then terminates the step-editing and replaces the original keyboard macro with the edited macro.

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15 File Handling
The operating system stores data permanently in named les, so most of the text you edit with Emacs comes from a le and is ultimately stored in a le. To edit a le, you must tell Emacs to read the le and prepare a buer containing a copy of the les text. This is called visiting the le. Editing commands apply directly to text in the buer; that is, to the copy inside Emacs. Your changes appear in the le itself only when you save the buer back into the le. In addition to visiting and saving les, Emacs can delete, copy, rename, and append to les, keep multiple versions of them, and operate on le directories.

15.1 File Names


Many Emacs commands that operate on a le require you to specify the le name, using the minibuer (see Section 5.1 [Minibuer File], page 27). While in the minibuer, you can use the usual completion and history commands (see Chapter 5 [Minibuer], page 27). Note that le name completion ignores le names whose extensions appear in the variable completion-ignored-extensions (see Section 5.3.5 [Completion Options], page 33). Note also that most commands use permissive completion with conrmation for reading le names: you are allowed to submit a nonexistent le name, but if you type RET immediately after completing up to a nonexistent le name, Emacs prints [Confirm] and you must type a second RET to conrm. See Section 5.3.3 [Completion Exit], page 31, for details. Each buer has a default directory, stored in the buer-local variable defaultdirectory. Whenever Emacs reads a le name using the minibuer, it usually inserts the default directory into the minibuer as the initial contents. You can inhibit this insertion by changing the variable insert-default-directory to nil (see Section 5.1 [Minibuer File], page 27). Regardless, Emacs always assumes that any relative le name is relative to the default directory, e.g. entering a le name without a directory species a le in the default directory. When you visit a le, Emacs sets default-directory in the visiting buer to the directory of its le. When you create a new buer that is not visiting a le, via a command like C-x b, its default directory is usually copied from the buer that was current at the time (see Section 16.1 [Select Buer], page 150). You can use the command M-x pwd to see the value of default-directory in the current buer. The command M-x cd prompts for a directory name, and sets the buers default-directory to that directory (doing this does not change the buers le name, if any). As an example, when you visit the le /u/rms/gnu/gnu.tasks, the default directory is set to /u/rms/gnu/. If you invoke a command that reads a le name, entering just foo in the minibuer, with a directory omitted, species the le /u/rms/gnu/foo; entering ../.login species /u/rms/.login; and entering new/foo species /u/rms/gnu/new/foo. When typing a le name into the minibuer, you can make use of a couple of shortcuts: a double slash is interpreted as ignore everything before the second

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slash in the pair, and ~/ is interpreted as your home directory. See Section 5.1 [Minibuer File], page 27. The character $ is used to substitute an environment variable into a le name. The name of the environment variable consists of all the alphanumeric characters after the $; alternatively, it can be enclosed in braces after the $. For example, if you have used the shell command export FOO=rms/hacks to set up an environment variable named FOO, then both /u/$FOO/test.c and /u/${FOO}/test.c are abbreviations for /u/rms/hacks/test.c. If the environment variable is not dened, no substitution occurs, so that the character $ stands for itself. Note that environment variables aect Emacs only if they are applied before Emacs is started. To access a le with $ in its name, if the $ causes expansion, type $$. This pair is converted to a single $ at the same time that variable substitution is performed for a single $. Alternatively, quote the whole le name with /: (see Section 15.14 [Quoted File Names], page 146). File names which begin with a literal ~ should also be quoted with /:. You can include non-ASCII characters in le names. See Section 19.12 [File Name Coding], page 195.

15.2 Visiting Files


C-x C-f C-x C-r C-x C-v C-x 4 f C-x 5 f Visit a le (find-file). Visit a le for viewing, without allowing changes to it (find-fileread-only). Visit a dierent le instead of the one visited last (find-alternatefile). Visit a le, in another window (find-file-other-window). Dont alter what is displayed in the selected window. Visit a le, in a new frame (find-file-other-frame). Dont alter what is displayed in the selected frame.

M-x find-file-literally Visit a le with no conversion of the contents. Visiting a le means reading its contents into an Emacs buer so you can edit them. Emacs makes a new buer for each le that you visit. To visit a le, type C-x C-f (find-file) and use the minibuer to enter the name of the desired le. While in the minibuer, you can abort the command by typing C-g. See Section 15.1 [File Names], page 124, for details about entering le names into minibuers. If the specied le exists but the system does not allow you to read it, an error message is displayed in the echo area. Otherwise, you can tell that C-x C-f has completed successfully by the appearance of new text on the screen, and by the buer name shown in the mode line (see Section 1.3 [Mode Line], page 8). Emacs normally constructs the buer name from the le name, omitting the directory name. For example, a le named /usr/rms/emacs.tex is visited in a buer named

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emacs.tex. If there is already a buer with that name, Emacs constructs a unique name; the normal method is to append <2>, <3>, and so on, but you can select other methods. See Section 16.7.1 [Uniquify], page 157. To create a new le, just visit it using the same command, C-x C-f. Emacs displays (New file) in the echo area, but in other respects behaves as if you had visited an existing empty le. After visiting a le, the changes you make with editing commands are made in the Emacs buer. They do not take eect in the visited le, until you save the buer (see Section 15.3 [Saving], page 128). If a buer contains changes that have not been saved, we say the buer is modied. This implies that some changes will be lost if the buer is not saved. The mode line displays two stars near the left margin to indicate that the buer is modied. If you visit a le that is already in Emacs, C-x C-f switches to the existing buer instead of making another copy. Before doing so, it checks whether the le has changed since you last visited or saved it. If the le has changed, Emacs oers to reread it. If you try to visit a le larger than large-file-warning-threshold (the default is 10000000, which is about 10 megabytes), Emacs asks you for conrmation rst. You can answer y to proceed with visiting the le. Note, however, that Emacs cannot visit les that are larger than the maximum Emacs buer size, which is limited by the amount of memory Emacs can allocate and by the integers that Emacs can represent (see Chapter 16 [Buers], page 150). If you try, Emacs displays an error message saying that the maximum buer size has been exceeded. If the le name you specify contains shell-style wildcard characters, Emacs visits all the les that match it. (On case-insensitive lesystems, Emacs matches the wildcards disregarding the letter case.) Wildcards include ?, *, and [...] sequences. To enter the wild card ? in a le name in the minibuer, you need to type C-q ?. See Section 15.14 [Quoted File Names], page 146, for information on how to visit a le whose name actually contains wildcard characters. You can disable the wildcard feature by customizing find-file-wildcards. If you visit the wrong le unintentionally by typing its name incorrectly, type C-x C-v (find-alternate-file) to visit the le you really wanted. C-x C-v is similar to C-x C-f, but it kills the current buer (after rst oering to save it if it is modied). When C-x C-v reads the le name to visit, it inserts the entire default le name in the buer, with point just after the directory part; this is convenient if you made a slight error in typing the name. If you visit a le that is actually a directory, Emacs invokes Dired, the Emacs directory browser. See Chapter 27 [Dired], page 329. You can disable this behavior by setting the variable find-file-run-dired to nil; in that case, it is an error to try to visit a directory. Files which are actually collections of other les, or le archives, are visited in special modes which invoke a Dired-like environment to allow operations on archive members. See Section 15.12 [File Archives], page 144, for more about these features. If you visit a le that the operating system wont let you modify, or that is marked read-only, Emacs makes the buer read-only too, so that you wont go ahead

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and make changes that youll have trouble saving afterward. You can make the buer writable with C-x C-q (toggle-read-only). See Section 16.3 [Misc Buer], page 152. If you want to visit a le as read-only in order to protect yourself from entering changes accidentally, visit it with the command C-x C-r (find-file-read-only) instead of C-x C-f. C-x 4 f (find-file-other-window) is like C-x C-f except that the buer containing the specied le is selected in another window. The window that was selected before C-x 4 f continues to show the same buer it was already showing. If this command is used when only one window is being displayed, that window is split in two, with one window showing the same buer as before, and the other one showing the newly requested le. See Chapter 17 [Windows], page 159. C-x 5 f (find-file-other-frame) is similar, but opens a new frame, or selects any existing frame showing the specied le. See Chapter 18 [Frames], page 165. On graphical displays, there are two additional methods for visiting les. Firstly, when Emacs is built with a suitable GUI toolkit, commands invoked with the mouse (by clicking on the menu bar or tool bar) use the toolkits standard File Selection dialog instead of prompting for the le name in the minibuer. On GNU/Linux and Unix platforms, Emacs does this when built with GTK, LessTif, and Motif toolkits; on MS-Windows and Mac, the GUI version does that by default. For information on how to customize this, see Section 18.16 [Dialog Boxes], page 177. Secondly, Emacs supports drag and drop: dropping a le into an ordinary Emacs window visits the le using that window. As an exception, dropping a le into a window displaying a Dired buer moves or copies the le into the displayed directory. For details, see Section 18.13 [Drag and Drop], page 176, and Section 27.18 [Misc Dired Features], page 344. Each time you visit a le, Emacs automatically scans its contents to detect what character encoding and end-of-line convention it uses, and converts these to Emacss internal encoding and end-of-line convention within the buer. When you save the buer, Emacs performs the inverse conversion, writing the le to disk with its original encoding and end-of-line convention. See Section 19.6 [Coding Systems], page 188. If you wish to edit a le as a sequence of ASCII characters with no special encoding or conversion, use the M-x find-file-literally command. This visits a le, like C-x C-f, but does not do format conversion (see Section Format Conversion in the Emacs Lisp Reference Manual ), character code conversion (see Section 19.6 [Coding Systems], page 188), or automatic uncompression (see Section 15.11 [Compressed Files], page 144), and does not add a nal newline because of requirefinal-newline (see Section 15.3.3 [Customize Save], page 132). If you have already visited the same le in the usual (non-literal) manner, this command asks you whether to visit it literally instead. Two special hook variables allow extensions to modify the operation of visiting les. Visiting a le that does not exist runs the functions in find-file-not-foundfunctions; this variable holds a list of functions, which are called one by one (with

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no arguments) until one of them returns non-nil. This is not a normal hook, and the name ends in -functions rather than -hook to indicate that fact. Successful visiting of any le, whether existing or not, calls the functions in find-file-hook, with no arguments. This variable is a normal hook. In the case of a nonexistent le, the find-file-not-found-functions are run rst. See Section 33.2.2 [Hooks], page 445. There are several ways to specify automatically the major mode for editing the le (see Section 20.3 [Choosing Modes], page 207), and to specify local variables dened for that le (see Section 33.2.4 [File Variables], page 447).

15.3 Saving Files


Saving a buer in Emacs means writing its contents back into the le that was visited in the buer. 15.3.1 Commands for Saving Files These are the commands that relate to saving and writing les. C-x C-s C-x s M-~ C-x C-w Save the current buer to its le (save-buffer). Save any or all buers to their les (save-some-buffers). Forget that the current buer has been changed (not-modified). With prex argument (C-u), mark the current buer as changed. Save the current buer with a specied le name (write-file).

M-x set-visited-file-name Change the le name under which the current buer will be saved. When you wish to save the le and make your changes permanent, type C-x C-s (save-buffer). After saving is nished, C-x C-s displays a message like this: Wrote /u/rms/gnu/gnu.tasks If the current buer is not modied (no changes have been made in it since the buer was created or last saved), saving is not really done, because it would have no eect. Instead, C-x C-s displays a message like this in the echo area: (No changes need to be saved) With a prex argument, C-u C-x C-s, Emacs also marks the buer to be backed up when the next save is done. See Section 15.3.2 [Backup], page 130. The command C-x s (save-some-buffers) oers to save any or all modied buers. It asks you what to do with each buer. The possible responses are analogous to those of query-replace: y n ! RET Save this buer and ask about the rest of the buers. Dont save this buer, but ask about the rest of the buers. Save this buer and all the rest with no more questions. Terminate save-some-buffers without any more saving.

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Save this buer, then exit save-some-buffers without even asking about other buers. View the buer that you are currently being asked about. When you exit View mode, you get back to save-some-buffers, which asks the question again. Di the buer against its corresponding le, so you can see what changes you would be saving. This calls the command diff-bufferwith-file (see Section 15.8 [Comparing Files], page 140). Display a help message about these options.

C-r

C-h

C-x C-c, the key sequence to exit Emacs, invokes save-some-buffers and therefore asks the same questions. If you have changed a buer but do not wish to save the changes, you should take some action to prevent it. Otherwise, each time you use C-x s or C-x C-c, you are liable to save this buer by mistake. One thing you can do is type M-~ (not-modified), which clears out the indication that the buer is modied. If you do this, none of the save commands will believe that the buer needs to be saved. (~ is often used as a mathematical symbol for not; thus M-~ is not, metaed.) Alternatively, you can cancel all the changes made since the le was visited or saved, by reading the text from the le again. This is called reverting. See Section 15.4 [Reverting], page 135. (You could also undo all the changes by repeating the undo command C-x u until you have undone all the changes; but reverting is easier.) M-x set-visited-file-name alters the name of the le that the current buer is visiting. It reads the new le name using the minibuer. Then it marks the buer as visiting that le name, and changes the buer name correspondingly. set-visited-file-name does not save the buer in the newly visited le; it just alters the records inside Emacs in case you do save later. It also marks the buer as modied so that C-x C-s in that buer will save. If you wish to mark the buer as visiting a dierent le and save it right away, use C-x C-w (write-file). This is equivalent to set-visited-file-name followed by C-x C-s, except that C-x C-w asks for conrmation if the le exists. C-x C-s used on a buer that is not visiting a le has the same eect as C-x C-w; that is, it reads a le name, marks the buer as visiting that le, and saves it there. The default le name in a buer that is not visiting a le is made by combining the buer name with the buers default directory (see Section 15.1 [File Names], page 124). If the new le name implies a major mode, then C-x C-w switches to that major mode, in most cases. The command set-visited-file-name also does this. See Section 20.3 [Choosing Modes], page 207. If Emacs is about to save a le and sees that the date of the latest version on disk does not match what Emacs last read or wrote, Emacs noties you of this fact, because it probably indicates a problem caused by simultaneous editing and requires your immediate attention. See Section 15.3.4 [Simultaneous Editing], page 133.

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On most operating systems, rewriting a le automatically destroys all record of what the le used to contain. Thus, saving a le from Emacs throws away the old contents of the leor it would, except that Emacs carefully copies the old contents to another le, called the backup le, before actually saving. Emacs makes a backup for a le only the rst time the le is saved from a buer. No matter how many times you subsequently save the le, its backup remains unchanged. However, if you kill the buer and then visit the le again, a new backup le will be made. For most les, the variable make-backup-files determines whether to make backup les. On most operating systems, its default value is t, so that Emacs does write backup les. For les managed by a version control system (see Section 25.1 [Version Control], page 292), the variable vc-make-backup-files determines whether to make backup les. By default it is nil, since backup les are redundant when you store all the previous versions in a version control system. See Section General VC Options in Specialized Emacs Features . At your option, Emacs can keep either a single backup for each le, or make a series of numbered backup les for each le that you edit. See Section 15.3.2.1 [Backup Names], page 130. The default value of the backup-enable-predicate variable prevents backup les being written for les in the directories used for temporary les, specied by temporary-file-directory or small-temporary-file-directory. You can explicitly tell Emacs to make another backup le from a buer, even though that buer has been saved before. If you save the buer with C-u C-x C-s, the version thus saved will be made into a backup le if you save the buer again. C-u C-u C-x C-s saves the buer, but rst makes the previous le contents into a new backup le. C-u C-u C-u C-x C-s does both things: it makes a backup from the previous contents, and arranges to make another from the newly saved contents if you save again. 15.3.2.1 Single or Numbered Backups When Emacs makes a backup le, its name is normally constructed by appending ~ to the le name being edited; thus, the backup le for eval.c would be eval.c~. If access control stops Emacs from writing backup les under the usual names, it writes the backup le as ~/.emacs.d/%backup%~. Only one such le can exist, so only the most recently made such backup is available. Emacs can also make numbered backup les. Numbered backup le names contain .~, the number, and another ~ after the original le name. Thus, the backup les of eval.c would be called eval.c.~1~, eval.c.~2~, and so on, all the way through names like eval.c.~259~ and beyond. The variable version-control determines whether to make single backup les or multiple numbered backup les. Its possible values are:

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Make numbered backups for les that have numbered backups already. Otherwise, make single backups. This is the default. Make numbered backups. Never make numbered backups; always make single backups.

The usual way to set this variable is globally, through your init le or the customization buer. However, you can set version-control locally in an individual buer to control the making of backups for that buers le (see Section 33.2.3 [Locals], page 446). You can have Emacs set version-control locally whenever you visit a given le (see Section 33.2.4 [File Variables], page 447). Some modes, such as Rmail mode, set this variable. If you set the environment variable VERSION_CONTROL, to tell various GNU utilities what to do with backup les, Emacs also obeys the environment variable by setting the Lisp variable version-control accordingly at startup. If the environment variables value is t or numbered, then version-control becomes t; if the value is nil or existing, then version-control becomes nil; if it is never or simple, then version-control becomes never. You can customize the variable backup-directory-alist to specify that les matching certain patterns should be backed up in specic directories. This variable applies to both single and numbered backups. A typical use is to add an element ("." . dir ) to make all backups in the directory with absolute name dir ; Emacs modies the backup le names to avoid clashes between les with the same names originating in dierent directories. Alternatively, adding, ("." . ".~") would make backups in the invisible subdirectory .~ of the original les directory. Emacs creates the directory, if necessary, to make the backup. If you dene the variable make-backup-file-name-function to a suitable Lisp function, that overrides the usual way Emacs constructs backup le names. 15.3.2.2 Automatic Deletion of Backups To prevent excessive consumption of disk space, Emacs can delete numbered backup versions automatically. Generally Emacs keeps the rst few backups and the latest few backups, deleting any in between. This happens every time a new backup is made. The two variables kept-old-versions and kept-new-versions control this deletion. Their values are, respectively, the number of oldest (lowest-numbered) backups to keep and the number of newest (highest-numbered) ones to keep, each time a new backup is made. The backups in the middle (excluding those oldest and newest) are the excess middle versionsthose backups are deleted. These variables values are used when it is time to delete excess versions, just after a new backup version is made; the newly made backup is included in the count in kept-newversions. By default, both variables are 2. If delete-old-versions is t, Emacs deletes the excess backup les silently. If it is nil, the default, Emacs asks you whether it should delete the excess backup versions. If it has any other value, then Emacs never automatically deletes backups.

Chapter 15: File Handling Direds . (Period) command can also be used to delete old versions. Section 27.3 [Dired Deletion], page 330. 15.3.2.3 Copying vs. Renaming

132 See

Backup les can be made by copying the old le or by renaming it. This makes a dierence when the old le has multiple names (hard links). If the old le is renamed into the backup le, then the alternate names become names for the backup le. If the old le is copied instead, then the alternate names remain names for the le that you are editing, and the contents accessed by those names will be the new contents. The method of making a backup le may also aect the les owner and group. If copying is used, these do not change. If renaming is used, you become the les owner, and the les group becomes the default (dierent operating systems have dierent defaults for the group). The choice of renaming or copying is made as follows: If the variable backup-by-copying is non-nil (the default is nil), use copying. Otherwise, if the variable backup-by-copying-when-linked is non-nil (the default is nil), and the le has multiple names, use copying. Otherwise, if the variable backup-by-copying-when-mismatch is non-nil (the default is t), and renaming would change the les owner or group, use copying. If you change backup-by-copying-when-mismatch to nil, Emacs checks the numeric user-id of the les owner. If this is higher than backup-by-copyingwhen-privileged-mismatch, then it behaves as though backup-by-copyingwhen-mismatch is non-nil anyway. Otherwise, renaming is the default choice. When a le is managed with a version control system (see Section 25.1 [Version Control], page 292), Emacs does not normally make backups in the usual way for that le. But check-in and check-out are similar in some ways to making backups. One unfortunate similarity is that these operations typically break hard links, disconnecting the le name you visited from any alternate names for the same le. This has nothing to do with Emacsthe version control system does it. 15.3.3 Customizing Saving of Files If the value of the variable require-final-newline is t, saving or writing a le silently puts a newline at the end if there isnt already one there. If the value is visit, Emacs adds a newline at the end of any le that doesnt have one, just after it visits the le. (This marks the buer as modied, and you can undo it.) If the value is visit-save, Emacs adds such newlines both on visiting and on saving. If the value is nil, Emacs leaves the end of the le unchanged; any other non-nil value means to asks you whether to add a newline. The default is nil. Some major modes are designed for specic kinds of les that are always supposed to end in newlines. Such major modes set the variable require-finalnewline to the value of mode-require-final-newline, which defaults to t. By setting the latter variable, you can control how these modes handle nal newlines.

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When Emacs saves a le, it invokes the fsync system call to force the data immediately out to disk. This is important for safety if the system crashes or in case of power outage. However, it can be disruptive on laptops using power saving, as it may force a disk spin-up each time you save a le. If you accept an increased risk of data loss, you can set write-region-inhibit-fsync to a non-nil value to disable the synchronization. 15.3.4 Protection against Simultaneous Editing Simultaneous editing occurs when two users visit the same le, both make changes, and then both save them. If nobody is informed that this is happening, whichever user saves rst would later nd that his changes were lost. On some systems, Emacs notices immediately when the second user starts to change the le, and issues an immediate warning. On all systems, Emacs checks when you save the le, and warns if you are about to overwrite another users changes. You can prevent loss of the other users work by taking the proper corrective action instead of saving the le. When you make the rst modication in an Emacs buer that is visiting a le, Emacs records that the le is locked by you. (It does this by creating a speciallynamed symbolic link in the same directory.) Emacs removes the lock when you save the changes. The idea is that the le is locked whenever an Emacs buer visiting it has unsaved changes. If you begin to modify the buer while the visited le is locked by someone else, this constitutes a collision. When Emacs detects a collision, it asks you what to do, by calling the Lisp function ask-user-about-lock. You can redene this function for the sake of customization. The standard denition of this function asks you a question and accepts three possible answers: s p q Steal the lock. Whoever was already changing the le loses the lock, and you gain the lock. Proceed. Go ahead and edit the le despite its being locked by someone else. Quit. This causes an error (file-locked), and the buer contents remain unchangedthe modication you were trying to make does not actually take place.

If Emacs or the operating system crashes, this may leave behind lock les which are stale, so you may occasionally get warnings about spurious collisions. When you determine that the collision is spurious, just use p to tell Emacs to go ahead anyway. Note that locking works on the basis of a le name; if a le has multiple names, Emacs does not prevent two users from editing it simultaneously under dierent names. A lock le cannot be written in some circumstances, e.g. if Emacs lacks the system permissions or the system does not support symbolic links. In these cases, Emacs can still detect the collision when you try to save a le, by checking the les

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last-modication date. If the le has changed since the last time Emacs visited or saved it, that implies that changes have been made in some other way, and will be lost if Emacs proceeds with saving. Emacs then displays a warning message and asks for conrmation before saving; answer yes to save, and no or C-g cancel the save. If you are notied that simultaneous editing has already taken place, one way to compare the buer to its le is the M-x diff-buffer-with-file command. See Section 15.8 [Comparing Files], page 140. 15.3.5 Shadowing Files M-x shadow-initialize Set up le shadowing. M-x shadow-define-literal-group Declare a single le to be shared between sites. M-x shadow-define-regexp-group Make all les that match each of a group of les be shared between hosts. M-x shadow-define-cluster RET name RET Dene a shadow le cluster name. M-x shadow-copy-files Copy all pending shadow les. M-x shadow-cancel Cancel the instruction to shadow some les. You can arrange to keep identical shadow copies of certain les in more than one placepossibly on dierent machines. To do this, rst you must set up a shadow le group, which is a set of identically-named les shared between a list of sites. The le group is permanent and applies to further Emacs sessions as well as the current one. Once the group is set up, every time you exit Emacs, it will copy the le you edited to the other les in its group. You can also do the copying without exiting Emacs, by typing M-x shadow-copy-files. To set up a shadow le group, use M-x shadow-define-literal-group or M-x shadow-define-regexp-group. See their documentation strings for further information. Before copying a le to its shadows, Emacs asks for conrmation. You can answer no to bypass copying of this le, this time. If you want to cancel the shadowing permanently for a certain le, use M-x shadow-cancel to eliminate or change the shadow le group. A shadow cluster is a group of hosts that share directories, so that copying to or from one of them is sucient to update the le on all of them. Each shadow cluster has a name, and species the network address of a primary host (the one we copy les to), and a regular expression that matches the host names of all the other hosts in the cluster. You can dene a shadow cluster with M-x shadow-define-cluster.

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You can arrange to put a time stamp in a le, so that it is updated automatically each time you edit and save the le. The time stamp must be in the rst eight lines of the le, and you should insert it like this: Time-stamp: <> or like this: Time-stamp: " " Then add the function time-stamp to the hook before-save-hook (see Section 33.2.2 [Hooks], page 445). When you save the le, this function then automatically updates the time stamp with the current date and time. You can also use the command M-x time-stamp to update the time stamp manually. For other customizations, see the Custom group time-stamp. Note that the time stamp is formatted according to your locale setting (see Section C.4 [Environment], page 509).

15.4 Reverting a Buer


If you have made extensive changes to a le-visiting buer and then change your mind, you can revert the changes and go back to the saved version of the le. To do this, type M-x revert-buffer. Since reverting unintentionally could lose a lot of work, Emacs asks for conrmation rst. The revert-buffer command tries to position point in such a way that, if the le was edited only slightly, you will be at approximately the same part of the text as before. But if you have made major changes, point may end up in a totally dierent location. Reverting marks the buer as not modied. It also clears the buers undo history (see Section 13.1 [Undo], page 110). Thus, the reversion cannot be undone if you change your mind yet again, you cant use the undo commands to bring the reverted changes back. Some kinds of buers that are not associated with les, such as Dired buers, can also be reverted. For them, reverting means recalculating their contents. Buers created explicitly with C-x b cannot be reverted; revert-buffer reports an error if you try. When you edit a le that changes automatically and frequentlyfor example, a log of output from a process that continues to runit may be useful for Emacs to revert the le without querying you. To request this behavior, set the variable revert-without-query to a list of regular expressions. When a le name matches one of these regular expressions, find-file and revert-buffer will revert it automatically if it has changedprovided the buer itself is not modied. (If you have edited the text, it would be wrong to discard your changes.) You can also tell Emacs to revert buers periodically. To do this for a specic buer, enable the minor mode Auto-Revert mode by typing M-x auto-revert-mode. This automatically reverts the current buer every ve seconds; you can change the interval through the variable auto-revert-interval. To do the same for all le buers, type M-x global-auto-revert-mode to enable Global Auto-Revert mode.

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These minor modes do not check or revert remote les, because that is usually too slow. One use of Auto-Revert mode is to tail a le such as a system log, so that changes made to that le by other programs are continuously displayed. To do this, just move the point to the end of the buer, and it will stay there as the le contents change. However, if you are sure that the le will only change by growing at the end, use Auto-Revert Tail mode instead (auto-revert-tail-mode). It is more ecient for this. Auto-Revert Tail mode works also for remote les. See Section 25.1.8 [VC Undo], page 304, for commands to revert to earlier versions of les under version control. See Section 25.1.2 [VC Mode Line], page 296, for Auto Revert peculiarities when visiting les under version control.

15.5 Auto-Saving: Protection Against Disasters


From time to time, Emacs automatically saves each visited le in a separate le, without altering the le you actually use. This is called auto-saving. It prevents you from losing more than a limited amount of work if the system crashes. When Emacs determines that it is time for auto-saving, it considers each buer, and each is auto-saved if auto-saving is enabled for it and it has been changed since the last time it was auto-saved. The message Auto-saving... is displayed in the echo area during auto-saving, if any les are actually auto-saved. Errors occurring during auto-saving are caught so that they do not interfere with the execution of commands you have been typing. 15.5.1 Auto-Save Files Auto-saving does not normally save in the les that you visited, because it can be very undesirable to save a change that you did not want to make permanent. Instead, auto-saving is done in a dierent le called the auto-save le, and the visited le is changed only when you request saving explicitly (such as with C-x C-s). Normally, the auto-save le name is made by appending # to the front and rear of the visited le name. Thus, a buer visiting le foo.c is auto-saved in a le #foo.c#. Most buers that are not visiting les are auto-saved only if you request it explicitly; when they are auto-saved, the auto-save le name is made by appending # to the front and rear of buer name, then adding digits and letters at the end for uniqueness. For example, the *mail* buer in which you compose messages to be sent might be auto-saved in a le named #*mail*#704juu. Auto-save le names are made this way unless you reprogram parts of Emacs to do something dierent (the functions make-auto-save-file-name and auto-save-file-name-p). The le name to be used for auto-saving in a buer is calculated when auto-saving is turned on in that buer. The variable auto-save-file-name-transforms allows a degree of control over the auto-save le name. It lets you specify a series of regular expressions and replacements to transform the auto save le name. The default value puts the

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auto-save les for remote les (see Section 15.13 [Remote Files], page 145) into the temporary le directory on the local machine. When you delete a substantial part of the text in a large buer, auto save turns o temporarily in that buer. This is because if you deleted the text unintentionally, you might nd the auto-save le more useful if it contains the deleted text. To reenable auto-saving after this happens, save the buer with C-x C-s, or use C-u 1 M-x auto-save-mode. If you want auto-saving to be done in the visited le rather than in a separate auto-save le, set the variable auto-save-visited-file-name to a non-nil value. In this mode, there is no real dierence between auto-saving and explicit saving. A buers auto-save le is deleted when you save the buer in its visited le. (You can inhibit this by setting the variable delete-auto-save-files to nil.) Changing the visited le name with C-x C-w or set-visited-file-name renames any auto-save le to go with the new visited name. 15.5.2 Controlling Auto-Saving Each time you visit a le, auto-saving is turned on for that les buer if the variable auto-save-default is non-nil (but not in batch mode; see Section C.2 [Initial Options], page 507). The default for this variable is t, so auto-saving is the usual practice for le-visiting buers. To toggle auto-saving in the current buer, type M-x auto-save-mode. Auto Save mode acts as a buer-local minor mode (see Section 20.2 [Minor Modes], page 205). Emacs auto-saves periodically based on how many characters you have typed since the last auto-save. The variable auto-save-interval species how many characters there are between auto-saves. By default, it is 300. Emacs doesnt accept values that are too small: if you customize auto-save-interval to a value less than 20, Emacs will behave as if the value is 20. Auto-saving also takes place when you stop typing for a while. By default, it does this after 30 seconds of idleness (at this time, Emacs may also perform garbage collection; see Section Garbage Collection in The Emacs Lisp Reference Manual ). To change this interval, customize the variable auto-save-timeout. The actual time period is longer if the current buer is long; this is a heuristic which aims to keep out of your way when you are editing long buers, in which auto-save takes an appreciable amount of time. Auto-saving during idle periods accomplishes two things: rst, it makes sure all your work is saved if you go away from the terminal for a while; second, it may avoid some auto-saving while you are actually typing. Emacs also does auto-saving whenever it gets a fatal error. This includes killing the Emacs job with a shell command such as kill %emacs, or disconnecting a phone line or network connection. You can perform an auto-save explicitly with the command M-x do-auto-save. 15.5.3 Recovering Data from Auto-Saves You can use the contents of an auto-save le to recover from a loss of data with the command M-x recover-file RET file RET. This visits le and then (after your

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conrmation) restores the contents from its auto-save le #file #. You can then save with C-x C-s to put the recovered text into le itself. For example, to recover le foo.c from its auto-save le #foo.c#, do: M-x recover-file RET foo.c RET yes RET C-x C-s Before asking for conrmation, M-x recover-file displays a directory listing describing the specied le and the auto-save le, so you can compare their sizes and dates. If the auto-save le is older, M-x recover-file does not oer to read it. If Emacs or the computer crashes, you can recover all the les you were editing from their auto save les with the command M-x recover-session. This rst shows you a list of recorded interrupted sessions. Move point to the one you choose, and type C-c C-c. Then recover-session asks about each of the les that were being edited during that session, asking whether to recover that le. If you answer y, it calls recoverfile, which works in its normal fashion. It shows the dates of the original le and its auto-save le, and asks once again whether to recover that le. When recover-session is done, the les youve chosen to recover are present in Emacs buers. You should then save them. Only thissaving themupdates the les themselves. Emacs records information about interrupted sessions in les named .saves-pid-hostname in the directory ~/.emacs.d/auto-save-list/. This directory is determined by the variable auto-save-list-file-prefix. If you set auto-save-list-file-prefix to nil, sessions are not recorded for recovery.

15.6 File Name Aliases


Symbolic links and hard links both make it possible for several le names to refer to the same le. Hard links are alternate names that refer directly to the le; all the names are equally valid, and no one of them is preferred. By contrast, a symbolic link is a kind of dened alias: when foo is a symbolic link to bar, you can use either name to refer to the le, but bar is the real name, while foo is just an alias. More complex cases occur when symbolic links point to directories. Normally, if you visit a le which Emacs is already visiting under a dierent name, Emacs displays a message in the echo area and uses the existing buer visiting that le. This can happen on systems that support hard or symbolic links, or if you use a long le name on a system that truncates long le names, or on a case-insensitive le system. You can suppress the message by setting the variable find-file-suppress-same-file-warnings to a non-nil value. You can disable this feature entirely by setting the variable find-file-existing-other-name to nil: then if you visit the same le under two dierent names, you get a separate buer for each le name. If the variable find-file-visit-truename is non-nil, then the le name recorded for a buer is the les truename (made by replacing all symbolic links

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with their target names), rather than the name you specify. Setting find-filevisit-truename also implies the eect of find-file-existing-other-name. Sometimes, a directory is ordinarily accessed through a symbolic link, and you may want Emacs to preferentially show its linked name. To do this, customize directory-abbrev-alist. Each element in this list should have the form (from . to ), which means to replace from with to whenever from appears in a directory name. The from string is a regular expression (see Section 12.5 [Regexps], page 97). It is matched against directory names anchored at the rst character, and should start with \ (to support directory names with embedded newlines, which would defeat ^). The to string should be an ordinary absolute directory name pointing to the same directory. Do not use ~ to stand for a home directory in the to string; Emacs performs these substitutions separately. Heres an example, from a system on which /home/fsf is normally accessed through a symbolic link named /fsf: (("\\/home/fsf" . "/fsf"))

15.7 File Directories


The le system groups les into directories. A directory listing is a list of all the les in a directory. Emacs provides commands to create and delete directories, and to make directory listings in brief format (le names only) and verbose format (sizes, dates, and authors included). Emacs also includes a directory browser feature called Dired; see Chapter 27 [Dired], page 329. C-x C-d dir-or-pattern RET Display a brief directory listing (list-directory). C-u C-x C-d dir-or-pattern RET Display a verbose directory listing. M-x make-directory RET dirname RET Create a new directory named dirname. M-x delete-directory RET dirname RET Delete the directory named dirname. If it isnt empty, you will be asked whether you want to delete it recursively. The command to display a directory listing is C-x C-d (list-directory). It reads using the minibuer a le name which is either a directory to be listed or a wildcard-containing pattern for the les to be listed. For example, C-x C-d /u2/emacs/etc RET lists all the les in directory /u2/emacs/etc. Here is an example of specifying a le name pattern: C-x C-d /u2/emacs/src/*.c RET Normally, C-x C-d displays a brief directory listing containing just le names. A numeric argument (regardless of value) tells it to make a verbose listing including sizes, dates, and owners (like ls -l). The text of a directory listing is mostly obtained by running ls in an inferior process. Two Emacs variables control the switches passed to ls: list-directorybrief-switches is a string giving the switches to use in brief listings ("-CF" by

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default), and list-directory-verbose-switches is a string giving the switches to use in a verbose listing ("-l" by default). In verbose directory listings, Emacs adds information about the amount of free space on the disk that contains the directory. To do this, it runs the program specied by directory-free-space-program with arguments directory-freespace-args. The command M-x delete-directory prompts for a directory name using the minibuer, and deletes the directory if it is empty. If the directory is not empty, you will be asked whether you want to delete it recursively. On systems that have a Trash (or Recycle Bin) feature, you can make this command move the specied directory to the Trash instead of deleting it outright, by changing the variable delete-by-moving-to-trash to t. See Section 15.10 [Misc File Ops], page 143, for more information about using the Trash.

15.8 Comparing Files


The command M-x diff prompts for two le names, using the minibuer, and displays the dierences between the two les in a buer named *diff*. This works by running the diff program, using options taken from the variable diffswitches. The value of diff-switches should be a string; the default is "-c" to specify a context di. See Section Di in Comparing and Merging Files , for more information about the diff program. The output of the diff command is shown using a major mode called Di mode. See Section 15.9 [Di Mode], page 141. The command M-x diff-backup compares a specied le with its most recent backup. If you specify the name of a backup le, diff-backup compares it with the source le that it is a backup of. In all other respects, this behaves like M-x diff. The command M-x diff-buffer-with-file compares a specied buer with its corresponding le. This shows you what changes you would make to the le if you save the buer. The command M-x compare-windows compares the text in the current window with that in the next window. (For more information about windows in Emacs, Chapter 17 [Windows], page 159.) Comparison starts at point in each window, after pushing each initial point value on the mark ring in its respective buer. Then it moves point forward in each window, one character at a time, until it reaches characters that dont match. Then the command exits. If point in the two windows is followed by non-matching text when the command starts, M-x compare-windows tries heuristically to advance up to matching text in the two windows, and then exits. So if you use M-x compare-windows repeatedly, each time it either skips one matching range or nds the start of another. With a numeric argument, compare-windows ignores changes in whitespace. If the variable compare-ignore-case is non-nil, the comparison ignores dierences in case as well. If the variable compare-ignore-whitespace is non-nil, compare-

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windows normally ignores changes in whitespace, and a prex argument turns that o. You can use M-x smerge-mode to turn on Smerge mode, a minor mode for editing output from the diff3 program. This is typically the result of a failed merge from a version control system update outside VC, due to conicting changes to a le. Smerge mode provides commands to resolve conicts by selecting specic changes. See Section Emerge in Specialized Emacs Features , for the Emerge facility, which provides a powerful interface for merging les.

15.9 Di Mode
Di mode is a major mode used for the output of M-x diff and other similar commands. This kind of output is called a patch, because it can be passed to the patch command to automatically apply the specied changes. To select Di mode manually, type M-x diff-mode. The changes specied in a patch are grouped into hunks, which are contiguous chunks of text that contain one or more changed lines. Hunks can also include unchanged lines to provide context for the changes. Each hunk is preceded by a hunk header, which species the old and new line numbers at which the hunk occurs. Di mode highlights each hunk header, to distinguish it from the actual contents of the hunk. You can edit a Di mode buer like any other buer. (If it is read-only, you need to make it writable rst. See Section 16.3 [Misc Buer], page 152.) Whenever you change a hunk, Di mode attempts to automatically correct the line numbers in the hunk headers, to ensure that the di remains correct. To disable automatic line number correction, change the variable diff-update-on-the-fly to nil. Di mode treats each hunk as an error message, similar to Compilation mode. Thus, you can use commands such as C-x to visit the corresponding source locations. See Section 24.2 [Compilation Mode], page 272. In addition, Di mode provides the following commands to navigate, manipulate and apply parts of patches: M-n Move to the next hunk-start (diff-hunk-next). This command has a side eect: it renes the hunk you move to, highlighting its changes with better granularity. To disable this feature, type M-x diff-auto-refine-mode to toggle o the minor mode Di Auto-Rene mode. To disable Di Auto Rene mode by default, add this to your init le (see Section 33.2.2 [Hooks], page 445): (add-hook diff-mode-hook (lambda () (diff-auto-refine-mode -1))) Move to the previous hunk-start (diff-hunk-prev). Like M-n, this has the side-eect of rening the hunk you move to, unless you disable Di Auto-Rene mode. Move to the next le-start, in a multi-le patch (diff-file-next). Move to the previous le-start, in a multi-le patch (diff-file-prev).

M-p

M-} M-{

Chapter 15: File Handling M-k M-K C-c C-a C-c C-b Kill the hunk at point (diff-hunk-kill). In a multi-le patch, kill the current le part. (diff-file-kill).

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Apply this hunk to its target le (diff-apply-hunk). With a prex argument of C-u, revert this hunk. Highlight the changes of the hunk at point with a ner granularity (diff-refine-hunk). This allows you to see exactly which parts of each changed line were actually changed. Go to the source le and line corresponding to this hunk (diff-gotosource). Start an Edi session with the patch (diff-ediff-patch). See Section Edi in The Edi Manual . Restrict the view to the current hunk (diff-restrict-view). See Section 11.5 [Narrowing], page 74. With a prex argument of C-u, restrict the view to the current le of a multiple-le patch. To widen again, use C-x n w (widen). Reverse the direction of comparison for the entire buer (diffreverse-direction). Split the hunk at point (diff-split-hunk). This is for manually editing patches, and only works with the unied di format produced by the -u or --unified options to the diff program. If you need to split a hunk in the context di format produced by the -c or --context options to diff, rst convert the buer to the unied di format with C-c C-u. Convert the entire buer to the context di format (diff-unified>context). With a prex argument, convert only the text within the region. Convert the entire buer to unied di format (diff-context>unified). With a prex argument, convert unied format to context format. When the mark is active, convert only the text within the region. Rene the current hunk so that it disregards changes in whitespace (diff-refine-hunk). Generate a ChangeLog entry, like C-x 4 a does (see Section 25.2 [Change Log], page 309), for each one of the hunks (diff-add-changelog-entries-other-window). This creates a skeleton of the log of changes that you can later ll with the actual descriptions of the changes. C-x 4 a itself in Di mode operates on behalf of the current hunks le, but gets the function name from the patch itself. This is useful for making log entries for functions that are deleted by the patch.

C-c C-c C-c C-e C-c C-n

C-c C-r C-c C-s

C-c C-d

C-c C-u

C-c C-w C-x 4 A

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By default, Di mode highlights trailing whitespace on modied lines, so that they are more obvious. This is done by enabling Whitespace mode in the Di buer (see Section 11.16 [Useless Whitespace], page 84). Di mode buers are set up so that Whitespace mode avoids highlighting trailing whitespace occurring in the di context.

15.10 Miscellaneous File Operations


Emacs has commands for performing many other operations on les. All operate on one le; they do not accept wildcard le names. M-x delete-file prompts for a le and deletes it. If you are deleting many les in one directory, it may be more convenient to use Dired rather than delete-file. See Section 27.3 [Dired Deletion], page 330. M-x move-file-to-trash moves a le into the system Trash (or Recycle Bin). This is a facility available on most operating systems; les that are moved into the Trash can be brought back later if you change your mind. By default, Emacs deletion commands do not use the Trash. To use the Trash (when it is available) for common deletion commands, change the variable deleteby-moving-to-trash to t. This aects the commands M-x delete-file and M-x delete-directory (see Section 15.7 [Directories], page 139), as well as the deletion commands in Dired (see Section 27.3 [Dired Deletion], page 330). Supplying a prex argument to M-x delete-file or M-x delete-directory makes them delete outright, instead of using the Trash, regardless of delete-by-moving-to-trash. M-x copy-file reads the le old and writes a new le named new with the same contents. M-x copy-directory copies directories, similar to the cp -r shell command. It prompts for a directory old and a destination new. If new is an existing directory, it creates a copy of the old directory and puts it in new. If new is not an existing directory, it copies all the contents of old into a new directory named new. M-x rename-file reads two le names old and new using the minibuer, then renames le old as new. If the le name new already exists, you must conrm with yes or renaming is not done; this is because renaming causes the old meaning of the name new to be lost. If old and new are on dierent le systems, the le old is copied and deleted. If the argument new is just a directory name, the real new name is in that directory, with the same non-directory component as old. For example, M-x rename-file RET ~/foo RET /tmp RET renames ~/foo to /tmp/foo. The same rule applies to all the remaining commands in this section. All of them ask for conrmation when the new le name already exists, too. M-x add-name-to-file adds an additional name to an existing le without removing its old name. The new name is created as a hard link to the existing le. The new name must belong on the same le system that the le is on. On MS-Windows, this command works only if the le resides in an NTFS le system. On MS-DOS, it works by copying the le. M-x make-symbolic-link reads two le names target and linkname, then creates a symbolic link named linkname, which points at target. The eect is that

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future attempts to open le linkname will refer to whatever le is named target at the time the opening is done, or will get an error if the name target is nonexistent at that time. This command does not expand the argument target, so that it allows you to specify a relative name as the target of the link. Not all systems support symbolic links; on systems that dont support them, this command is not dened. M-x insert-file (also C-x i) inserts a copy of the contents of the specied le into the current buer at point, leaving point unchanged before the contents. The position after the inserted contents is added to the mark ring, without activating the mark (see Section 8.4 [Mark Ring], page 51). M-x insert-file-literally is like M-x insert-file, except the le is inserted literally: it is treated as a sequence of ASCII characters with no special encoding or conversion, similar to the M-x find-file-literally command (see Section 15.2 [Visiting], page 125). M-x write-region is the inverse of M-x insert-file; it copies the contents of the region into the specied le. M-x append-to-file adds the text of the region to the end of the specied le. See Section 9.4 [Accumulating Text], page 61. The variable write-region-inhibit-fsync applies to these commands, as well as saving les; see Section 15.3.3 [Customize Save], page 132. M-x set-file-modes reads a le name followed by a le mode, and applies that le mode to the specied le. File modes, also called le permissions, determine whether a le can be read, written to, or executed, and by whom. This command reads le modes using the same symbolic or octal format accepted by the chmod command; for instance, u+x means to add execution permission for the user who owns the le. It has no eect on operating systems that do not support le modes. chmod is a convenience alias for this function.

15.11 Accessing Compressed Files


Emacs automatically uncompresses compressed les when you visit them, and automatically recompresses them if you alter them and save them. Emacs recognizes compressed les by their le names. File names ending in .gz indicate a le compressed with gzip. Other endings indicate other compression programs. Automatic uncompression and compression apply to all the operations in which Emacs uses the contents of a le. This includes visiting it, saving it, inserting its contents into a buer, loading it, and byte compiling it. To disable this feature, type the command M-x auto-compression-mode. You can disable it permanently by customizing the variable auto-compression-mode.

15.12 File Archives


A le whose name ends in .tar is normally an archive made by the tar program. Emacs views these les in a special mode called Tar mode which provides a Diredlike list of the contents (see Chapter 27 [Dired], page 329). You can move around through the list just as you would in Dired, and visit the subles contained in the archive. However, not all Dired commands are available in Tar mode.

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If Auto Compression mode is enabled (see Section 15.11 [Compressed Files], page 144), then Tar mode is used also for compressed archivesles with extensions .tgz, .tar.Z and .tar.gz. The keys e, f and RET all extract a component le into its own buer. You can edit it there, and if you save the buer, the edited version will replace the version in the Tar buer. Clicking with the mouse on the le name in the Tar buer does likewise. v extracts a le into a buer in View mode (see Section 11.6 [View Mode], page 75). o extracts the le and displays it in another window, so you could edit the le and operate on the archive simultaneously. d marks a le for deletion when you later use x, and u unmarks a le, as in Dired. C copies a le from the archive to disk and R renames a le within the archive. g reverts the buer from the archive on disk. The keys M, G, and O change the les permission bits, group, and owner, respectively. Saving the Tar buer writes a new version of the archive to disk with the changes you made to the components. You dont need the tar program to use Tar modeEmacs reads the archives directly. However, accessing compressed archives requires the appropriate uncompression program. A separate but similar Archive mode is used for arc, jar, lzh, zip, rar, 7z, and zoo archives, as well as exe les that are self-extracting executables. The key bindings of Archive mode are similar to those in Tar mode, with the addition of the m key which marks a le for subsequent operations, and M-DEL which unmarks all the marked les. Also, the a key toggles the display of detailed le information, for those archive types where it wont t in a single line. Operations such as renaming a suble, or changing its mode or owner, are supported only for some of the archive formats. Unlike Tar mode, Archive mode runs the archiving programs to unpack and repack archives. However, you dont need these programs to look at the archive table of contents, only to extract or manipulate the subles in the archive. Details of the program names and their options can be set in the Archive Customize group.

15.13 Remote Files


You can refer to les on other machines using a special le name syntax: /host :filename /user @host :filename /user @host #port :filename /method :user @host :filename /method :user @host #port :filename To carry out this request, Emacs uses a remote-login program such as ftp, ssh, rlogin, or telnet. You can always specify in the le name which method to usefor example, /ftp:user @host :filename uses FTP, whereas /ssh:user @host :filename uses ssh. When you dont specify a method in the le name, Emacs chooses the method as follows:

Chapter 15: File Handling 1. If the host name starts with ftp. (with dot), Emacs uses FTP. 2. If the user name is ftp or anonymous, Emacs uses FTP. 3. If the variable tramp-default-method is set to ftp, Emacs uses FTP. 4. If ssh-agent is running, Emacs uses scp. 5. Otherwise, Emacs uses ssh.

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You can entirely turn o the remote le name feature by setting the variable trampmode to nil. You can turn o the feature in individual cases by quoting the le name with /: (see Section 15.14 [Quoted File Names], page 146). Remote le access through FTP is handled by the Ange-FTP package, which is documented in the following. Remote le access through the other methods is handled by the Tramp package, which has its own manual. See Section Top in The Tramp Manual . When the Ange-FTP package is used, Emacs logs in through FTP using the name user, if that is specied in the remote le name. If user is unspecied, Emacs logs in using your user name on the local system; but if you set the variable angeftp-default-user to a string, that string is used instead. When logging in, Emacs may also ask for a password. For performance reasons, Emacs does not make backup les for les accessed via FTP by default. To make it do so, change the variable ange-ftp-make-backupfiles to a non-nil value. By default, auto-save les for remote les are made in the temporary le directory on the local machine, as specied by the variable auto-save-file-nametransforms. See Section 15.5.1 [Auto Save Files], page 136. To visit les accessible by anonymous FTP, you use special user names anonymous or ftp. Passwords for these user names are handled specially. The variable ange-ftp-generate-anonymous-password controls what happens: if the value of this variable is a string, then that string is used as the password; if non-nil (the default), then the value of user-mail-address is used; if nil, then Emacs prompts you for a password as usual (see Section 5.6 [Passwords], page 36). Sometimes you may be unable to access les on a remote machine because a rewall in between blocks the connection for security reasons. If you can log in on a gateway machine from which the target les are accessible, and whose FTP server supports gatewaying features, you can still use remote le names; all you have to do is specify the name of the gateway machine by setting the variable ange-ftpgateway-host, and set ange-ftp-smart-gateway to t. Otherwise you may be able to make remote le names work, but the procedure is complex. You can read the instructions by typing M-x finder-commentary RET ange-ftp RET.

15.14 Quoted File Names


You can quote an absolute le name to prevent special characters and syntax in it from having their special eects. The way to do this is to add /: at the beginning. For example, you can quote a local le name which appears remote, to prevent it from being treated as a remote le name. Thus, if you have a directory

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named /foo: and a le named bar in it, you can refer to that le in Emacs as /:/foo:/bar. /: can also prevent ~ from being treated as a special character for a users home directory. For example, /:/tmp/~hack refers to a le whose name is ~hack in directory /tmp. Quoting with /: is also a way to enter in the minibuer a le name that contains $. In order for this to work, the /: must be at the beginning of the minibuer contents. (You can also double each $; see [File Names with $], page 125.) You can also quote wildcard characters with /:, for visiting. For example, /:/tmp/foo*bar visits the le /tmp/foo*bar. Another method of getting the same result is to enter /tmp/foo[*]bar, which is a wildcard specication that matches only /tmp/foo*bar. However, in many cases there is no need to quote the wildcard characters because even unquoted they give the right result. For example, if the only le name in /tmp that starts with foo and ends with bar is foo*bar, then specifying /tmp/foo*bar will visit only /tmp/foo*bar.

15.15 File Name Cache


You can use the le name cache to make it easy to locate a le by name, without having to remember exactly where it is located. When typing a le name in the minibuer, C-TAB (file-cache-minibuffer-complete) completes it using the le name cache. If you repeat C-TAB, that cycles through the possible completions of what you had originally typed. (However, note that the C-TAB character cannot be typed on most text terminals.) The le name cache does not ll up automatically. Instead, you load le names into the cache using these commands: M-x file-cache-add-directory RET directory RET Add each le name in directory to the le name cache. M-x file-cache-add-directory-using-find RET directory RET Add each le name in directory and all of its nested subdirectories to the le name cache. M-x file-cache-add-directory-using-locate RET directory RET Add each le name in directory and all of its nested subdirectories to the le name cache, using locate to nd them all. M-x file-cache-add-directory-list RET variable RET Add each le name in each directory listed in variable to the le name cache. variable should be a Lisp variable whose value is a list of directory names, like load-path. M-x file-cache-clear-cache RET Clear the cache; that is, remove all le names from it. The le name cache is not persistent: it is kept and maintained only for the duration of the Emacs session. You can view the contents of the cache with the file-cache-display command.

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15.16 Convenience Features for Finding Files


In this section, we introduce some convenient facilities for nding recently-opened les, reading le names from a buer, and viewing image les. If you enable Recentf mode, with M-x recentf-mode, the File menu includes a submenu containing a list of recently opened les. M-x recentf-save-list saves the current recent-file-list to a le, and M-x recentf-edit-list edits it. The M-x ffap command generalizes find-file with more powerful heuristic defaults (see Section 31.11.3 [FFAP], page 427), often based on the text at point. Partial Completion mode oers other features extending find-file, which can be used with ffap. See Section 5.3.5 [Completion Options], page 33. Visiting image les automatically selects Image mode. In this major mode, you can type C-c C-c (image-toggle-display) to toggle between displaying the le as an image in the Emacs buer, and displaying its underlying text (or raw byte) representation. Displaying the le as an image works only if Emacs is compiled with support for displaying such images. If the displayed image is wider or taller than the frame, the usual point motion keys (C-f, C-p, and so forth) cause dierent parts of the image to be displayed. If the image can be animated, the command RET (image-toggle-animation) starts or stops the animation. Animation plays once, unless the option image-animate-loop is non-nil. Currently, Emacs only supports animation in GIF les. If your Emacs was compiled with ImageMagick support, it is possible to view a much wider variety of image types in Image mode, by rendering the images via ImageMagick. However, this feature is currently disabled by default. To enable it, add the following line to your init le: (imagemagick-register-types) The Image-Dired package can also be used to view images as thumbnails. See Section 27.17 [Image-Dired], page 343.

15.17 Filesets
If you regularly edit a certain group of les, you can dene them as a leset. This lets you perform certain operations, such as visiting, query-replace, and shell commands on all the les at once. To make use of lesets, you must rst add the expression (filesets-init) to your init le (see Section 33.4 [Init File], page 461). This adds a Filesets menu to the menu bar. The simplest way to dene a leset is by adding les to it one at a time. To add a le to leset name, visit the le and type M-x filesets-add-buffer RET name RET. If there is no leset name, this creates a new one, which initially contains only the current le. The command M-x filesets-remove-buffer removes the current le from a leset. You can also edit the list of lesets directly, with M-x filesets-edit (or by choosing Edit Filesets from the Filesets menu). The editing is performed in a Customize buer (see Section 33.1 [Easy Customization], page 434). Normally, a leset is a simple list of les, but you can also dene a leset as a regular expression matching le names. Some examples of these more complicated lesets are shown

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in the Customize buer. Remember to select Save for future sessions if you want to use the same lesets in future Emacs sessions. You can use the command M-x filesets-open to visit all the les in a leset, and M-x filesets-close to close them. Use M-x filesets-run-cmd to run a shell command on all the les in a leset. These commands are also available from the Filesets menu, where each existing leset is represented by a submenu. See Section 25.1 [Version Control], page 292, for a dierent concept of lesets: groups of les bundled together for version control operations. Filesets of that type are unnamed, and do not persist across Emacs sessions.

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16 Using Multiple Buers


The text you are editing in Emacs resides in an object called a buer. Each time you visit a le, a buer is used to hold the les text. Each time you invoke Dired, a buer is used to hold the directory listing. If you send a message with C-x m, a buer is used to hold the text of the message. When you ask for a commands documentation, that appears in a buer named *Help*. Each buer has a unique name, which can be of any length. When a buer is displayed in a window, its name is shown in the mode line (see Section 1.3 [Mode Line], page 8). The distinction between upper and lower case matters in buer names. Most buers are made by visiting les, and their names are derived from the les names; however, you can also create an empty buer with any name you want. A newly started Emacs has several buers, including one named *scratch*, which can be used for evaluating Lisp expressions and is not associated with any le (see Section 24.10 [Lisp Interaction], page 290). At any time, one and only one buer is selected ; we call it the current buer. We sometimes say that a command operates on the buer; this really means that it operates on the current buer. When there is only one Emacs window, the buer displayed in that window is current. When there are multiple windows, the buer displayed in the selected window is current. See Chapter 17 [Windows], page 159. Aside from its textual contents, each buer records several pieces of information, such as what le it is visiting (if any), whether it is modied, and what major mode and minor modes are in eect (see Chapter 20 [Modes], page 204). These are stored in buer-local variablesvariables that can have a dierent value in each buer. See Section 33.2.3 [Locals], page 446. A buers size cannot be larger than some maximum, which is dened by the largest buer position representable by Emacs integers. This is because Emacs tracks buer positions using that data type. For typical 64-bit machines, this maximum buer size is 26 1 2 bytes, or about 2 EiB. For typical 32-bit machines, the maximum is usually 22 9 2 bytes, or about 512 MiB. Buer sizes are also limited by the amount of memory in the system.

16.1 Creating and Selecting Buers


C-x b buffer RET Select or create a buer named buer (switch-to-buffer). C-x 4 b buffer RET Similar, but select buer in another window (switch-to-bufferother-window). C-x 5 b buffer RET Similar, but select buer in a separate frame (switch-to-bufferother-frame). C-x LEFT C-x RIGHT Select the previous buer in the buer list (previous-buffer). Select the next buer in the buer list (next-buffer).

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C-u M-g M-g C-u M-g g Read a number n and move to line n in the most recently selected buer other than the current buer. The C-x b (switch-to-buffer) command reads a buer name using the minibuer. Then it makes that buer current, and displays it in the currently-selected window. An empty input species the buer that was current most recently among those not now displayed in any window. While entering the buer name, you can use the usual completion and history commands (see Chapter 5 [Minibuer], page 27). Note that C-x b, and related commands, use permissive completion with conrmation for minibuer completion: if you type RET immediately after completing up to a nonexistent buer name, Emacs prints [Confirm] and you must type a second RET to submit that buer name. See Section 5.3.3 [Completion Exit], page 31, for details. If you specify a buer that does not exist, C-x b creates a new, empty buer that is not visiting any le, and selects it for editing. The default value of the variable major-mode determines the new buers major mode; the default value is Fundamental mode. See Section 20.1 [Major Modes], page 204. One reason to create a new buer is to use it for making temporary notes. If you try to save it, Emacs asks for the le name to use, and the buers major mode is re-established taking that le name into account (see Section 20.3 [Choosing Modes], page 207). For conveniently switching between a few buers, use the commands C-x LEFT and C-x RIGHT. C-x LEFT (previous-buffer) selects the previous buer (following the order of most recent selection in the current frame), while C-x RIGHT (nextbuffer) moves through buers in the reverse direction. To select a buer in a window other than the current one, type C-x 4 b (switchto-buffer-other-window). This prompts for a buer name using the minibuer, displays that buer in another window, and selects that window. Similarly, C-x 5 b (switch-to-buffer-other-frame) prompts for a buer name, displays that buer in another frame, and selects that frame. If the buer is already being shown in a window on another frame, Emacs selects that window and frame instead of creating a new frame. See Section 17.6 [Displaying Buers], page 163, for how the C-x 4 b and C-x 5 b commands get the window and/or frame to display in. In addition, C-x C-f, and any other command for visiting a le, can also be used to switch to an existing le-visiting buer. See Section 15.2 [Visiting], page 125. C-u M-g M-g, that is goto-line with a plain prex argument, reads a number n using the minibuer, selects the most recently selected buer other than the current buer in another window, and then moves point to the beginning of line number n in that buer. This is mainly useful in a buer that refers to line numbers in another buer: if point is on or just after a number, goto-line uses that number as the default for n. Note that prex arguments other than just C-u behave dierently. C-u 4 M-g M-g goes to line 4 in the current buer, without reading a number from the minibuer. (Remember that M-g M-g without prex argument reads a number n and then moves to line number n in the current buer. See Section 4.2 [Moving Point], page 18.)

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Emacs uses buer names that start with a space for internal purposes. It treats these buers specially in minor waysfor example, by default they do not record undo information. It is best to avoid using such buer names yourself.

16.2 Listing Existing Buers


C-x C-b List the existing buers (list-buffers). To display a list of existing buers, type C-x C-b. Each line in the list shows one buers name, major mode and visited le. The buers are listed in the order that they were current; the buers that were current most recently come rst. . in the rst eld of a line indicates that the buer is current. % indicates a read-only buer. * indicates that the buer is modied. If several buers are modied, it may be time to save some with C-x s (see Section 15.3.1 [Save Commands], page 128). Here is an example of a buer list:
CRM Buffer . * .emacs % *Help* search.c % src * *mail* % HELLO % NEWS *scratch* * *Messages* Size 3294 101 86055 20959 42 1607 481184 191 1554 Mode Emacs-Lisp Help C Dired by name Mail Fundamental Outline Lisp Interaction Fundamental File ~/.emacs ~/cvs/emacs/src/search.c ~/cvs/emacs/src/ ~/cvs/emacs/etc/HELLO ~/cvs/emacs/etc/NEWS

The buer *Help* was made by a help request (see Chapter 7 [Help], page 38); it is not visiting any le. The buer src was made by Dired on the directory ~/cvs/emacs/src/. You can list only buers that are visiting les by giving the command a prex argument, as in C-u C-x C-b. list-buffers omits buers whose names begin with a space, unless they visit les: such buers are used internally by Emacs.

16.3 Miscellaneous Buer Operations


C-x C-q Toggle read-only status of buer (toggle-read-only).

M-x rename-buffer RET name RET Change the name of the current buer. M-x rename-uniquely Rename the current buer by adding <number > to the end. M-x view-buffer RET buffer RET Scroll through buer buer. See Section 11.6 [View Mode], page 75. A buer can be read-only, which means that commands to change its contents are not allowed. The mode line indicates read-only buers with %% or %* near the left margin. Read-only buers are usually made by subsystems such as Dired and Rmail that have special commands to operate on the text; also by visiting a le whose access control says you cannot write it.

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The command C-x C-q (toggle-read-only) makes a read-only buer writable, and makes a writable buer read-only. This works by setting the variable bufferread-only, which has a local value in each buer and makes the buer read-only if its value is non-nil. M-x rename-buffer changes the name of the current buer. You specify the new name as a minibuer argument; there is no default. If you specify a name that is in use for some other buer, an error happens and no renaming is done. M-x rename-uniquely renames the current buer to a similar name with a numeric sux added to make it both dierent and unique. This command does not need an argument. It is useful for creating multiple shell buers: if you rename the *shell* buer, then do M-x shell again, it makes a new shell buer named *shell*; meanwhile, the old shell buer continues to exist under its new name. This method is also good for mail buers, compilation buers, and most Emacs features that create special buers with particular names. (With some of these features, such as M-x compile, M-x grep, you need to switch to some other buer before using the command again, otherwise it will reuse the current buer despite the name change.) The commands M-x append-to-buffer and M-x insert-buffer can also be used to copy text from one buer to another. See Section 9.4 [Accumulating Text], page 61.

16.4 Killing Buers


If you continue an Emacs session for a while, you may accumulate a large number of buers. You may then nd it convenient to kill the buers you no longer need. On most operating systems, killing a buer releases its space back to the operating system so that other programs can use it. Here are some commands for killing buers: C-x k bufname RET Kill buer bufname (kill-buffer). M-x kill-some-buffers Oer to kill each buer, one by one. M-x kill-matching-buffers Oer to kill all buers matching a regular expression. C-x k (kill-buffer) kills one buer, whose name you specify in the minibuer. The default, used if you type just RET in the minibuer, is to kill the current buer. If you kill the current buer, another buer becomes current: one that was current in the recent past but is not displayed in any window now. If you ask to kill a le-visiting buer that is modied, then you must conrm with yes before the buer is killed. The command M-x kill-some-buffers asks about each buer, one by one. An answer of y means to kill the buer, just like kill-buffer. This command ignores buers whose names begin with a space, which are used internally by Emacs.

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The command M-x kill-matching-buffers prompts for a regular expression and kills all buers whose names match that expression. See Section 12.5 [Regexps], page 97. Like kill-some-buffers, it asks for conrmation before each kill. This command normally ignores buers whose names begin with a space, which are used internally by Emacs. To kill internal buers as well, call kill-matching-buffers with a prex argument. The buer menu feature is also convenient for killing various buers. See Section 16.5 [Several Buers], page 154. If you want to do something special every time a buer is killed, you can add hook functions to the hook kill-buffer-hook (see Section 33.2.2 [Hooks], page 445). If you run one Emacs session for a period of days, as many people do, it can ll up with buers that you used several days ago. The command M-x clean-buffer-list is a convenient way to purge them; it kills all the unmodied buers that you have not used for a long time. An ordinary buer is killed if it has not been displayed for three days; however, you can specify certain buers that should never be killed automatically, and others that should be killed if they have been unused for a mere hour. You can also have this buer purging done for you, once a day, by enabling Midnight mode. Midnight mode operates each day at midnight; at that time, it runs clean-buffer-list, or whichever functions you have placed in the normal hook midnight-hook (see Section 33.2.2 [Hooks], page 445). To enable Midnight mode, use the Customization buer to set the variable midnight-mode to t. See Section 33.1 [Easy Customization], page 434.

16.5 Operating on Several Buers


M-x buffer-menu Begin editing a buer listing all Emacs buers. M-x buffer-menu-other-window. Similar, but do it in another window. The buer menu opened by C-x C-b (see Section 16.2 [List Buers], page 152) does not merely list buers. It also allows you to perform various operations on buers, through an interface similar to Dired (see Chapter 27 [Dired], page 329). You can save buers, kill them (here called deleting them, for consistency with Dired), or display them. To use the buer menu, type C-x C-b and switch to the window displaying the *Buffer List* buer. You can also type M-x buffer-menu to open the buer menu in the selected window. Alternatively, the command M-x buffer-menu-other-window opens the buer menu in another window, and selects that window. The buer menu is a read-only buer, and can be changed only through the special commands described in this section. The usual cursor motion commands can be used in this buer. The following commands apply to the buer described on the current line:

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Request to delete (kill) the buer, then move down. The request shows as a D on the line, before the buer name. Requested deletions take place when you type the x command. Like d but move up afterwards instead of down. Request to save the buer. The request shows as an S on the line. Requested saves take place when you type the x command. You may request both saving and deletion for the same buer. Perform previously requested deletions and saves. Remove any request made for the current line, and move down. Move to previous line and remove any request made for that line.

C-d s

x u DEL

The d, C-d, s and u commands to add or remove ags also move down (or up) one line. They accept a numeric argument as a repeat count. These commands operate immediately on the buer listed on the current line: ~ % t Mark the buer unmodied. The command ~ does this immediately when you type it. Toggle the buers read-only ag. The command % does this immediately when you type it. Visit the buer as a tags table. See Section 25.3.4 [Select Tags Table], page 317. There are also commands to select another buer or buers: q RET f o C-o 1 2 Quit the buer menuimmediately display the most recent formerly visible buer in its place. Immediately select this lines buer in place of the *Buffer List* buer. Immediately select this lines buer in another window as if by C-x 4 b, leaving *Buffer List* visible. Immediately display this lines buer in another window, but dont select the window. Immediately select this lines buer in a full-screen window. Immediately set up two windows, with this lines buer selected in one, and the previously current buer (aside from the buer *Buffer List*) displayed in the other. Bury the buer listed on this line. Mark this lines buer to be displayed in another window if you exit with the v command. The request shows as a > at the beginning of the line. (A single buer may not have both a delete request and a display request.)

b m

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Immediately select this lines buer, and also display in other windows any buers previously marked with the m command. If you have not marked any buers, this command is equivalent to 1. There is also a command that aects the entire buer list:

Delete, or reinsert, lines for non-le buers. This command toggles the inclusion of such buers in the buer list.

What buffer-menu actually does is create and switch to a suitable buer, and turn on Buer Menu mode in it. Everything else described above is implemented by the special commands provided in Buer Menu mode. One consequence of this is that you can switch from the *Buffer List* buer to another Emacs buer, and edit there. You can reselect the *Buffer List* buer later, to perform the operations already requested, or you can kill it, or pay no further attention to it. Normally, the buer *Buffer List* is not updated automatically when buers are created and killed; its contents are just text. If you have created, deleted or renamed buers, the way to update *Buffer List* to show what you have done is to type g (revert-buffer). You can make this happen regularly every autorevert-interval seconds if you enable Auto Revert mode in this buer, as long as it is not marked modied. Global Auto Revert mode applies to the *Buffer List* buer only if global-auto-revert-non-file-buffers is non-nil. See Info le emacs-xtra, node Autorevert, for details.

16.6 Indirect Buers


An indirect buer shares the text of some other buer, which is called the base buer of the indirect buer. In some ways it is a buer analogue of a symbolic link between les. M-x make-indirect-buffer RET base-buffer RET indirect-name RET Create an indirect buer named indirect-name with base buer basebuer. M-x clone-indirect-buffer RET Create an indirect buer that is a twin copy of the current buer. C-x 4 c Create an indirect buer that is a twin copy of the current buer, and select it in another window (clone-indirect-buffer-otherwindow).

The text of the indirect buer is always identical to the text of its base buer; changes made by editing either one are visible immediately in the other. But in all other respects, the indirect buer and its base buer are completely separate. They can have dierent names, dierent values of point, dierent narrowing, dierent markers, dierent major modes, and dierent local variables. An indirect buer cannot visit a le, but its base buer can. If you try to save the indirect buer, that actually works by saving the base buer. Killing the base buer eectively kills the indirect buer, but killing an indirect buer has no eect on its base buer.

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One way to use indirect buers is to display multiple views of an outline. See Section 22.8.4 [Outline Views], page 228. A quick and handy way to make an indirect buer is with the command M-x clone-indirect-buffer. It creates and selects an indirect buer whose base buer is the current buer. With a numeric argument, it prompts for the name of the indirect buer; otherwise it uses the name of the current buer, with a <n > sux added. C-x 4 c (clone-indirect-buffer-other-window) works like M-x clone-indirect-buffer, but it selects the new buer in another window. These functions run the hook clone-indirect-buffer-hook after creating the indirect buer. The more general way to make an indirect buer is with the command M-x make-indirect-buffer. It creates an indirect buer named indirect-name from a buer base-buer, prompting for both using the minibuer.

16.7 Convenience Features and Customization of Buer Handling


This section describes several modes and features that make it more convenient to switch between buers. 16.7.1 Making Buer Names Unique When several buers visit identically-named les, Emacs must give the buers distinct names. The usual method for making buer names unique adds <2>, <3>, etc. to the end of the buer names (all but one of them). Other methods work by adding parts of each les directory to the buer name. To select one, load the library uniquify (e.g. using (require uniquify)), and customize the variable uniquify-buffer-name-style (see Section 33.1 [Easy Customization], page 434). To begin with, the forward naming method includes part of the les directory name at the beginning of the buer name; using this method, buers visiting the les /u/rms/tmp/Makefile and /usr/projects/zaphod/Makefile would be named tmp/Makefile and zaphod/Makefile, respectively (instead of Makefile and Makefile<2>). In contrast, the post-forward naming method would call the buers Makefile|tmp and Makefile|zaphod, and the reverse naming method would call them Makefile\tmp and Makefile\zaphod. The nontrivial dierence between post-forward and reverse occurs when just one directory name is not enough to distinguish two les; then reverse puts the directory names in reverse order, so that /top/middle/file becomes file\middle\top, while post-forward puts them in forward order after the le name, as in file|top/middle. Which rule to follow for putting the directory names in the buer name is not very important if you are going to look at the buer names before you type one. But as an experienced user, if you know the rule, you wont have to look. And

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then you may nd that one rule or another is easier for you to remember and apply quickly. 16.7.2 Switching Between Buers using Substrings Iswitchb global minor mode provides convenient switching between buers using substrings of their names. It replaces the normal denitions of C-x b, C-x 4 b, C-x 5 b, and C-x 4 C-o with alternative commands that are somewhat smarter. When one of these commands prompts you for a buer name, you can type in just a substring of the name you want to choose. As you enter the substring, Iswitchb mode continuously displays a list of buers that match the substring you have typed. At any time, you can type RET to select the rst buer in the list. So the way to select a particular buer is to make it the rst in the list. There are two ways to do this. You can type more of the buer name and thus narrow down the list, excluding unwanted buers above the desired one. Alternatively, you can use C-s and C-r to rotate the list until the desired buer is rst. TAB while entering the buer name performs completion on the string you have entered, based on the displayed list of buers. To enable Iswitchb mode, type M-x iswitchb-mode, or customize the variable iswitchb-mode to t (see Section 33.1 [Easy Customization], page 434). 16.7.3 Customizing Buer Menus M-x bs-show Make a list of buers similarly to M-x list-buffers but customizable. M-x bs-show pops up a buer list similar to the one normally displayed by C-x C-b but which you can customize. If you prefer this to the usual buer list, you can bind this command to C-x C-b. To customize this buer list, use the bs Custom group (see Section 33.1 [Easy Customization], page 434). MSB global minor mode (MSB stands for mouse select buer) provides a dierent and customizable mouse buer menu which you may prefer. It replaces the bindings of mouse-buffer-menu, normally on C-Down-Mouse-1, and the menu bar buer menu. You can customize the menu in the msb Custom group.

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17 Multiple Windows
Emacs can split a frame into two or many windows. Multiple windows can display parts of dierent buers, or dierent parts of one buer. Multiple frames always imply multiple windows, because each frame has its own set of windows. Each window belongs to one and only one frame.

17.1 Concepts of Emacs Windows


Each Emacs window displays one Emacs buer at any time. A single buer may appear in more than one window; if it does, any changes in its text are displayed in all the windows where it appears. But these windows can show dierent parts of the buer, because each window has its own value of point. At any time, one Emacs window is the selected window ; the buer this window is displaying is the current buer. On graphical displays, the point is indicated by a solid blinking cursor in the selected window, and by a hollow box in non-selected windows. On text terminals, the cursor is drawn only in the selected window. See Section 11.20 [Cursor Display], page 88. Commands to move point aect the value of point for the selected Emacs window only. They do not change the value of point in other Emacs windows, even those showing the same buer. The same is true for buer-switching commands such as C-x b; they do not aect other windows at all. However, there are other commands such as C-x 4 b that select a dierent window and switch buers in it. Also, all commands that display information in a window, including (for example) C-h f (describe-function) and C-x C-b (list-buffers), work by switching buers in a nonselected window without aecting the selected window. When multiple windows show the same buer, they can have dierent regions, because they can have dierent values of point. However, they all have the same value for the mark, because each buer has only one mark position. Each window has its own mode line, which displays the buer name, modication status and major and minor modes of the buer that is displayed in the window. The selected windows mode line appears in a dierent color. See Section 1.3 [Mode Line], page 8, for details.

17.2 Splitting Windows


C-x 2 C-x 3 C-Mouse-2 Split the selected window into two windows, one above the other (split-window-below). Split the selected window into two windows, positioned side by side (split-window-right). In the mode line of a window, split that window.

C-x 2 (split-window-below) splits the selected window into two windows, one above the other. After splitting, the selected window is the upper one, and the newly split-o window is below. Both windows have the same value of point as

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before, and display the same portion of the buer (or as close to it as possible). If necessary, the windows are scrolled to keep point on-screen. By default, the two windows each get half the height of the original window. A positive numeric argument species how many lines to give to the top window; a negative numeric argument species how many lines to give to the bottom window. If you change the variable split-window-keep-point to nil, C-x 2 instead adjusts the portion of the buer displayed by the two windows, as well as the value of point in each window, in order to keep the text on the screen as close as possible to what it was before; furthermore, if point was in the lower half of the original window, the bottom window is selected instead of the upper one. C-x 3 (split-window-right) splits the selected window into two side-by-side windows. The left window is the selected one; the right window displays the same portion of the same buer, and has the same value of point. A positive numeric argument species how many columns to give the left window; a negative numeric argument species how many columns to give the right window. When you split a window with C-x 3, each resulting window occupies less than the full width of the frame. If it becomes too narrow, the buer may be dicult to read if continuation lines are in use (see Section 4.8 [Continuation Lines], page 23). Therefore, Emacs automatically switches to line truncation if the window width becomes narrower than 50 columns. This truncation occurs regardless of the value of the variable truncate-lines (see Section 11.21 [Line Truncation], page 89); it is instead controlled by the variable truncate-partial-width-windows. If the value of this variable is a positive integer (the default is 50), that species the minimum width for a partial-width window before automatic line truncation occurs; if the value is nil, automatic line truncation is disabled; and for any other non-nil value, Emacs truncates lines in every partial-width window regardless of its width. On text terminals, side-by-side windows are separated by a vertical divider which is drawn using the vertical-border face. If you click C-Mouse-2 in the mode line of a window, that splits the window, putting a vertical divider where you click. Depending on how Emacs is compiled, you can also split a window by clicking C-Mouse-2 in the scroll bar, which puts a horizontal divider where you click (this feature does not work when Emacs uses GTK+ scroll bars).

17.3 Using Other Windows


C-x o C-M-v Mouse-1 Select another window (other-window). Scroll the next window (scroll-other-window). Mouse-1, in the text area of a window, selects the window and moves point to the position clicked. Clicking in the mode line selects the window without moving point in it.

With the keyboard, you can switch windows by typing C-x o (other-window). That is an o, for other, not a zero. When there are more than two windows, this command moves through all the windows in a cyclic order, generally top to

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bottom and left to right. After the rightmost and bottommost window, it goes back to the one at the upper left corner. A numeric argument means to move several steps in the cyclic order of windows. A negative argument moves around the cycle in the opposite order. When the minibuer is active, the minibuer is the last window in the cycle; you can switch from the minibuer window to one of the other windows, and later switch back and nish supplying the minibuer argument that is requested. See Section 5.2 [Minibuer Edit], page 28. The usual scrolling commands (see Chapter 11 [Display], page 70) apply to the selected window only, but there is one command to scroll the next window. C-M-v (scroll-other-window) scrolls the window that C-x o would select. It takes arguments, positive and negative, like C-v. (In the minibuer, C-M-v scrolls the help window associated with the minibuer, if any, rather than the next window in the standard cyclic order; see Section 5.2 [Minibuer Edit], page 28.) If you set mouse-autoselect-window to a non-nil value, moving the mouse over a dierent window selects that window. This feature is o by default.

17.4 Displaying in Another Window


C-x 4 is a prex key for a variety of commands that switch to a buer in a dierent windoweither another existing window, or a new window created by splitting the selected window. See Section 17.6.1 [Window Choice], page 163, for how Emacs picks or creates the window to use. C-x 4 b bufname RET Select buer bufname in another window (switch-to-buffer-otherwindow). C-x 4 C-o bufname RET Display buer bufname in some window, without trying to select it (display-buffer). See Section 17.6 [Displaying Buers], page 163, for details about how the window is chosen. C-x 4 f filename RET Visit le lename and select its buer in another window (find-fileother-window). See Section 15.2 [Visiting], page 125. C-x 4 d directory RET Select a Dired buer for directory directory in another window (dired-other-window). See Chapter 27 [Dired], page 329. C-x 4 m Start composing a mail message, similar to C-x m (see Chapter 29 [Sending Mail], page 367), but in another window (mail-otherwindow). Find a tag in the current tags table, similar to M-. (see Section 25.3 [Tags], page 311), but in another window (find-tag-other-window).

C-x 4 .

C-x 4 r filename RET Visit le lename read-only, and select its buer in another window (find-file-read-only-other-window). See Section 15.2 [Visiting], page 125.

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17.5 Deleting and Rearranging Windows


C-x 0 C-x 1 C-x 4 0 Delete the selected window (delete-window). Delete all windows in the selected frame except the selected window (delete-other-windows). Delete the selected window and kill the buer that was showing in it (kill-buffer-and-window). The last character in this key sequence is a zero. Make selected window taller (enlarge-window). Make selected window wider (enlarge-window-horizontally). Make selected window narrower (shrink-window-horizontally). Shrink this window if its buer doesnt need so many lines (shrinkwindow-if-larger-than-buffer). Make all windows the same height (balance-windows).

C-x ^ C-x } C-x { C-x C-x +

To delete the selected window, type C-x 0 (delete-window). (That is a zero.) Once a window is deleted, the space that it occupied is given to an adjacent window (but not the minibuer window, even if that is active at the time). Deleting the window has no eect on the buer it used to display; the buer continues to exist, and you can still switch to with C-x b. C-x 4 0 (kill-buffer-and-window) is a stronger command than C-x 0; it kills the current buer and then deletes the selected window. C-x 1 (delete-other-windows) deletes all the windows, except the selected one; the selected window expands to use the whole frame. (This command cannot be used while the minibuer window is active; attempting to do so signals an error.) The command C-x ^ (enlarge-window) makes the selected window one line taller, taking space from a vertically adjacent window without changing the height of the frame. With a positive numeric argument, this command increases the window height by that many lines; with a negative argument, it reduces the height by that many lines. If there are no vertically adjacent windows (i.e. the window is at the full frame height), that signals an error. The command also signals an error if you attempt to reduce the height of any window below a certain minimum number of lines, specied by the variable window-min-height (the default is 4). Similarly, C-x } (enlarge-window-horizontally) makes the selected window wider, and C-x { (shrink-window-horizontally) makes it narrower. These commands signal an error if you attempt to reduce the width of any window below a certain minimum number of columns, specied by the variable window-min-width (the default is 10). C-x - (shrink-window-if-larger-than-buffer) reduces the height of the selected window, if it is taller than necessary to show the whole text of the buer it is displaying. It gives the extra lines to other windows in the frame. You can also use C-x + (balance-windows) to even out the heights of all the windows in the selected frame.

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Mouse clicks on the mode line provide another way to change window heights and to delete windows. See Section 18.5 [Mode Line Mouse], page 169.

17.6 Displaying a Buer in a Window


It is a common Emacs operation to display or pop up some buer in response to a user command. There are several dierent ways in which commands do this. Many commands, like C-x C-f (find-file), display the buer by taking over the selected window, expecting that the users attention will be diverted to that buer. These commands usually work by calling switch-to-buffer internally (see Section 16.1 [Select Buer], page 150). Some commands try to display intelligently, trying not to take over the selected window, e.g. by splitting o a new window and displaying the desired buer there. Such commands, which include the various help commands (see Chapter 7 [Help], page 38), work by calling display-buffer internally. See Section 17.6.1 [Window Choice], page 163, for details. Other commands do the same as display-buffer, and additionally select the displaying window so that you can begin editing its buer. The command C-x (next-error) is one example (see Section 24.2 [Compilation Mode], page 272). Such commands work by calling the function pop-to-buffer internally. See Section Switching to a Buer in a Window in The Emacs Lisp Reference Manual . Commands with names ending in -other-window behave like display-buffer, except that they never display in the selected window. Several of these commands are bound in the C-x 4 prex key (see Section 17.4 [Pop Up Window], page 161). Commands with names ending in -other-frame behave like display-buffer, except that they (i) never display in the selected window and (ii) prefer to create a new frame to display the desired buer instead of splitting a windowas though the variable pop-up-frames is set to t (see Section 17.6.1 [Window Choice], page 163). Several of these commands are bound in the C-x 5 prex key. 17.6.1 How display-buffer works The display-buffer command (as well as commands that call it internally) chooses a window to display by following the steps given below. See Section Choosing a Window for Display in The Emacs Lisp Reference Manual , for details about how to alter this sequence of steps. First, check if the buer should be displayed in the selected window regardless of other considerations. You can tell Emacs to do this by adding the desired buers name to the list same-window-buffer-names, or adding a matching regular expression to the list same-window-regexps. By default, these variables are nil, so this step is skipped. Otherwise, if the buer is already displayed in an existing window, reuse that window. Normally, only windows on the selected frame are considered, but windows on other frames are also reusable if you change display-bufferreuse-frames to t, or if you change pop-up-frames (see below) to t.

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Otherwise, if you specied that the buer should be displayed in a special frame by customizing special-display-buffer-names or special-displayregexps, do so. See Section Choosing Window Options in The Emacs Lisp Reference Manual . Otherwise, optionally create a new frame and display the buer there. By default, this step is skipped. To enable it, change the variable pop-up-frames to a non-nil value. The special value graphic-only means to do this only on graphical displays. Otherwise, try to create a new window by splitting the selected window, and display the buer in that new window. The split can be either vertical or horizontal, depending on the variables split-height-threshold and split-width-threshold. These variables should have integer values. If split-height-threshold is smaller than the selected windows height, the split puts the new window below. Otherwise, if split-width-threshold is smaller than the windows width, the split puts the new window on the right. If neither condition holds, Emacs tries to split so that the new window is belowbut only if the window was not split before (to avoid excessive splitting). Otherwise, display the buer in an existing window on the selected frame. If all the above methods fail for whatever reason, create a new frame and display the buer there.

17.7 Convenience Features for Window Handling


Winner mode is a global minor mode that records the changes in the window conguration (i.e. how the frames are partitioned into windows), so that you can undo them. You can toggle Winner mode with M-x winner-mode, or by customizing the variable winner-mode. When the mode is enabled, C-c left (winner-undo) undoes the last window conguration change. If you change your mind while undoing, you can redo the changes you had undone using C-c right (M-x winner-redo). Follow mode (M-x follow-mode) synchronizes several windows on the same buer so that they always display adjacent sections of that buer. See Section 11.7 [Follow Mode], page 75. The Windmove package denes commands for moving directionally between neighboring windows in a frame. M-x windmove-right selects the window immediately to the right of the currently selected one, and similarly for the left, up, and down counterparts. M-x windmove-default-keybindings binds these commands to S-right etc.; doing so disables shift selection for those keys (see Section 8.6 [Shift Selection], page 52). The command M-x compare-windows lets you compare the text shown in dierent windows. See Section 15.8 [Comparing Files], page 140. Scroll All mode (M-x scroll-all-mode) is a global minor mode that causes scrolling commands and point motion commands to apply to every single window.

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18 Frames and Graphical Displays


When Emacs is started on a graphical display, e.g. on the X Window System, it occupies a graphical system-level window. In this manual, we call this a frame, reserving the word window for the part of the frame used for displaying a buer. A frame initially contains one window, but it can be subdivided into multiple windows (see Chapter 17 [Windows], page 159). A frame normally also contains a menu bar, tool bar, and echo area. You can also create additional frames (see Section 18.6 [Creating Frames], page 169). All frames created in the same Emacs session have access to the same underlying buers and other data. For instance, if a buer is being shown in more than one frame, any changes made to it in one frame show up immediately in the other frames too. Typing C-x C-c closes all the frames on the current display, and ends the Emacs session if it has no frames open on any other displays (see Section 3.2 [Exiting], page 15). To close just the selected frame, type C-x 5 0 (that is zero, not o). This chapter describes Emacs features specic to graphical displays (particularly mouse commands), and features for managing multiple frames. On text terminals, many of these features are unavailable. However, it is still possible to create multiple frames on text terminals; such frames are displayed one at a time, lling the entire terminal screen (see Section 18.19 [Non-Window Terminals], page 179). It is also possible to use the mouse on some text terminals (see Section 18.20 [Text-Only Mouse], page 179, for doing so on GNU and Unix systems; and see Section MSDOS Mouse in Specialized Emacs Features , for doing so on MS-DOS).

18.1 Mouse Commands for Editing


Mouse-1 Move point to where you click (mouse-set-point).

Drag-Mouse-1 Activate the region around the text selected by dragging, and copy it to the kill ring (mouse-set-region). Mouse-2 Mouse-3 Move point to where you click, and insert the contents of the primary selection there (mouse-yank-primary). If the region is active, move the nearer end of the region to the click position; otherwise, set mark at the current value of point and point at the click position. Save the resulting region in the kill ring; on a second click, kill it (mouse-save-then-kill).

The most basic mouse command is mouse-set-point, which is invoked by clicking with the left mouse button, Mouse-1, in the text area of a window. This moves point to the position where you clicked. If that window was not the selected window, it becomes the selected window. Normally, if the frame you clicked in was not the selected frame, it is made the selected frame, in addition to selecting the window and setting the cursor. On the

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X Window System, you can change this by setting the variable x-mouse-clickfocus-ignore-position to t. In that case, the initial click on an unselected frame just selects the frame, without doing anything else; clicking again selects the window and sets the cursor position. Holding down Mouse-1 and dragging the mouse over a stretch of text activates the region around that text (mouse-set-region), placing the mark where you started holding down the mouse button, and point where you release it (see Chapter 8 [Mark], page 47). In addition, the text in the region becomes the primary selection (see Section 9.3.2 [Primary Selection], page 60). If you change the variable mouse-drag-copy-region to a non-nil value, dragging the mouse over a stretch of text also adds the text to the kill ring. The default is nil. If you move the mouse o the top or bottom of the window while dragging, the window scrolls at a steady rate until you move the mouse back into the window. This way, you can select regions that dont t entirely on the screen. The number of lines scrolled per step depends on how far away from the window edge the mouse has gone; the variable mouse-scroll-min-lines species a minimum step size. Clicking with the middle mouse button, Mouse-2, moves point to the position where you clicked and inserts the contents of the primary selection (mouse-yankprimary). See Section 9.3.2 [Primary Selection], page 60. This behavior is consistent with other X applications. Alternatively, you can rebind Mouse-2 to mouseyank-at-click, which performs a yank at point. If you change the variable mouse-yank-at-point to a non-nil value, Mouse-2 does not move point; it inserts the text at point, regardless of where you clicked or even which of the frames windows you clicked on. This variable aects both mouse-yank-primary and mouse-yank-at-click. Clicking with the right mouse button, Mouse-3, runs the command mouse-savethen-kill. This performs several actions depending on where you click and the status of the region: If no region is active, clicking Mouse-3 activates the region, placing the mark where point was and point at the clicked position. If a region is active, clicking Mouse-3 adjusts the nearer end of the region by moving it to the clicked position. The adjusted regions text is copied to the kill ring; if the text in the original region was already on the kill ring, it replaces it there. If you originally specied the region using a double or triple Mouse-1, so that the region is dened to consist of entire words or lines (see Section 18.2 [Word and Line Mouse], page 167), then adjusting the region with Mouse-3 also proceeds by entire words or lines. If you use Mouse-3 a second time consecutively, at the same place, that kills the region already selected. Thus, the simplest way to kill text with the mouse is to click Mouse-1 at one end, then click Mouse-3 twice at the other end. To copy the text into the kill ring without deleting it from the buer, press Mouse-3 just onceor just drag across the text with Mouse-1. Then you can copy it elsewhere by yanking it.

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The mouse-save-then-kill command also obeys the variable mouse-dragcopy-region (described above). If the value is non-nil, then whenever the command sets or adjusts the active region, the text in the region is also added to the kill ring. If the latest kill ring entry had been added the same way, that entry is replaced rather than making a new entry. Whenever you set the region using any of the mouse commands described above, the mark will be deactivated by any subsequent unshifted cursor motion command, in addition to the usual ways of deactivating the mark. See Section 8.6 [Shift Selection], page 52. Some mice have a wheel which can be used for scrolling. Emacs supports scrolling windows with the mouse wheel, by default, on most graphical displays. To toggle this feature, use M-x mouse-wheel-mode. The variables mouse-wheelfollow-mouse and mouse-wheel-scroll-amount determine where and by how much buers are scrolled. The variable mouse-wheel-progressive-speed determines whether the scroll speed is linked to how fast you move the wheel.

18.2 Mouse Commands for Words and Lines


These variants of Mouse-1 select entire words or lines at a time. Emacs activates the region around the selected text, which is also copied to the kill ring. Double-Mouse-1 Select the text around the word which you click on. Double-clicking on a character with symbol syntax (such as underscore, in C mode) selects the symbol surrounding that character. Double-clicking on a character with open- or close-parenthesis syntax selects the parenthetical grouping which that character starts or ends. Double-clicking on a character with string-delimiter syntax (such as a single-quote or double-quote in C) selects the string constant (Emacs uses heuristics to gure out whether that character is the beginning or the end of it). Double-Drag-Mouse-1 Select the text you drag across, in the form of whole words. Triple-Mouse-1 Select the line you click on. Triple-Drag-Mouse-1 Select the text you drag across, in the form of whole lines.

18.3 Following References with the Mouse


Some Emacs buers include buttons, or hyperlinks : pieces of text that perform some action (e.g. following a reference) when activated (e.g. by clicking on them). Usually, a buttons text is visually highlighted: it is underlined, or a box is drawn around it. If you move the mouse over a button, the shape of the mouse cursor

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changes and the button lights up. If you change the variable mouse-highlight to nil, Emacs disables this highlighting. You can activate a button by moving point to it and typing RET, or by clicking either Mouse-1 or Mouse-2 on the button. For example, in a Dired buer, each le name is a button; activating it causes Emacs to visit that le (see Chapter 27 [Dired], page 329). In a *Compilation* buer, each error message is a button, and activating it visits the source code for that error (see Section 24.1 [Compilation], page 271). Although clicking Mouse-1 on a button usually activates the button, if you hold the mouse button down for a period of time before releasing it (specically, for more than 450 milliseconds), then Emacs moves point where you clicked, without activating the button. In this way, you can use the mouse to move point over a button without activating it. Dragging the mouse over or onto a button has its usual behavior of setting the region, and does not activate the button. You can change how Mouse-1 applies to buttons by customizing the variable mouse-1-click-follows-link. If the value is a positive integer, that determines how long you need to hold the mouse button down for, in milliseconds, to cancel button activation; the default is 450, as described in the previous paragraph. If the value is nil, Mouse-1 just sets point where you clicked, and does not activate buttons. If the value is double, double clicks activate buttons but single clicks just set point. Normally, Mouse-1 on a button activates the button even if it is in a non-selected window. If you change the variable mouse-1-click-in-non-selected-windows to nil, Mouse-1 on a button in an unselected window moves point to the clicked position and selects that window, without activating the button.

18.4 Mouse Clicks for Menus


Several mouse clicks with the CTRL and SHIFT modiers bring up menus. C-Mouse-1 This menu is for selecting a buer. The MSB (mouse select buer) global minor mode makes this menu smarter and more customizable. See Section 16.7.3 [Buer Menus], page 158. C-Mouse-2 This menu contains entries for examining faces and other text properties, and well as for setting them (the latter is mainly useful when editing enriched text; see Section 22.13 [Enriched Text], page 237). This menu is mode-specic. For most modes if Menu-bar mode is on, this menu has the same items as all the mode-specic menu-bar menus put together. Some modes may specify a dierent menu for this button. If Menu Bar mode is o, this menu contains all the items which would be present in the menu barnot just the mode-specic onesso that you can access them without having to display the menu bar.

C-Mouse-3

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This menu is for changing the default face within the windows buer. See Section 11.11 [Text Scale], page 79.

Some graphical applications use Mouse-3 for a mode-specic menu. If you prefer Mouse-3 in Emacs to bring up such a menu instead of running the mouse-savethen-kill command, rebind Mouse-3 by adding the following line to your init le (see Section 33.3.6 [Init Rebinding], page 455):
(global-set-key [mouse-3] mouse-popup-menubar-stuff)

18.5 Mode Line Mouse Commands


You can use mouse clicks on window mode lines to select and manipulate windows. Some areas of the mode line, such as the buer name, and major and minor mode names, have their own special mouse bindings. These areas are highlighted when you hold the mouse over them, and information about the special bindings will be displayed (see Section 18.17 [Tooltips], page 178). This sections commands do not apply in those areas. Mouse-1 Mouse-1 on a mode line selects the window it belongs to. By dragging Mouse-1 on the mode line, you can move it, thus changing the height of the windows above and below. Changing heights with the mouse in this way never deletes windows, it just refuses to make any window smaller than the minimum height. Mouse-2 on a mode line expands that window to ll its frame. Mouse-3 on a mode line deletes the window it belongs to. If the frame has only one window, it does nothing. C-Mouse-2 on a mode line splits that window, producing two side-byside windows with the boundary running through the click position (see Section 17.2 [Split Window], page 159).

Mouse-2 Mouse-3 C-Mouse-2

Furthermore, by clicking and dragging Mouse-1 on the divider between two side-by-side mode lines, you can move the vertical boundary to the left or right.

18.6 Creating Frames


The prex key C-x 5 is analogous to C-x 4. Whereas each C-x 4 command pops up a buer in a dierent window in the selected frame (see Section 17.4 [Pop Up Window], page 161), the C-x 5 commands use a dierent frame. If an existing visible or iconied (minimized) frame already displays the requested buer, that frame is raised and deiconied (un-minimized); otherwise, a new frame is created on the current display terminal. The various C-x 5 commands dier in how they nd or create the buer to select: C-x 5 2 Create a new frame (make-frame-command). This runs switch-toC-x 5 b bufname RET Select buer bufname in another frame. buffer-other-frame.

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C-x 5 f filename RET Visit le lename and select its buer in another frame. This runs find-file-other-frame. See Section 15.2 [Visiting], page 125. C-x 5 d directory RET Select a Dired buer for directory directory in another frame. This runs dired-other-frame. See Chapter 27 [Dired], page 329. C-x 5 m Start composing a mail message in another frame. This runs mailother-frame. It is the other-frame variant of C-x m. See Chapter 29 [Sending Mail], page 367. Find a tag in the current tag table in another frame. This runs findtag-other-frame, the multiple-frame variant of M-.. See Section 25.3 [Tags], page 311.

C-x 5 .

C-x 5 r filename RET Visit le lename read-only, and select its buer in another frame. This runs find-file-read-only-other-frame. See Section 15.2 [Visiting], page 125. You can control the appearance and behavior of the newly-created frames by specifying frame parameters. See Section 18.11 [Frame Parameters], page 175.

18.7 Frame Commands


The following commands are used to delete and operate on frames: C-x 5 0 C-z C-x 5 o C-x 5 1 Delete the selected frame (delete-frame). This signals an error if there is only one frame. Minimize (or iconify) the selected Emacs frame (suspend-frame). See Section 3.2 [Exiting], page 15. Select another frame, and raise it. If you repeat this command, it cycles through all the frames on your terminal. Delete all frames on the current terminal, except the selected one.

The C-x 5 0 (delete-frame) command deletes the selected frame. However, it will refuse to delete the last frame in an Emacs session, to prevent you from losing the ability to interact with the Emacs session. Note that when Emacs is run as a daemon (see Section 31.4 [Emacs Server], page 412), there is always a virtual frame that remains after all the ordinary, interactive frames are deleted. In this case, C-x 5 0 can delete the last interactive frame; you can use emacsclient to reconnect to the Emacs session. The C-x 5 1 (delete-other-frames) command deletes all other frames on the current terminal (this terminal refers to either a graphical display, or a text terminal; see Section 18.19 [Non-Window Terminals], page 179). If the Emacs session has frames open on other graphical displays or text terminals, those are not deleted. The C-x 5 o (other-frame) command selects the next frame on the current terminal. If you are using Emacs on the X Window System with a window manager

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that selects (or gives focus to ) whatever frame the mouse cursor is over, you have to change the variable focus-follows-mouse to t in order for this command to work properly. Then invoking C-x 5 o will also warp the mouse cursor to the chosen frame.

18.8 Fonts
By default, Emacs displays text on graphical displays using a 12-point monospace font. There are several dierent ways to specify a dierent font: Click on Set Default Font in the Options menu. To save this for future sessions, click on Save Options in the Options menu. Add a line to your init le, modifying the variable default-frame-alist to specify the font parameter (see Section 18.11 [Frame Parameters], page 175), like this: (add-to-list default-frame-alist (font . "DejaVu Sans Mono-10")) Add an emacs.font X resource setting to your X resource le, like this: emacs.font: DejaVu Sans Mono-12 You must restart X, or use the xrdb command, for the X resources le to take eect. See Section D.1 [Resources], page 521. Do not quote font names in X resource les. If you are running Emacs on the GNOME desktop, you can tell Emacs to use the default system font by setting the variable font-use-system-font to t (the default is nil). For this to work, Emacs must have been compiled with Gconf support. Use the command line option -fn (or --font). See Section C.6 [Font X], page 515. To check what font youre currently using, the C-u C-x = command can be helpful. It describes the character at point, and names the font that its rendered in. On X, there are four dierent ways to express a font name. The rst is to use a Fontcong pattern. Fontcong patterns have the following form: fontname [-fontsize ][:name1 =values1 ][:name2 =values2 ]... Within this format, any of the elements in braces may be omitted. Here, fontname is the family name of the font, such as Monospace or DejaVu Sans Mono; fontsize is the point size of the font (one printers point is about 1/72 of an inch); and the name =values entries specify settings such as the slant and weight of the font. Each values may be a single value, or a list of values separated by commas. In addition, some property values are valid with only one kind of property name, in which case the name = part may be omitted. Here is a list of common font properties: slant weight One of italic, oblique, or roman. One of light, medium, demibold, bold or black.

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Some fonts dene special styles which are a combination of slant and weight. For instance, Dejavu Sans denes the book style, which overrides the slant and weight properties. One of condensed, normal, or expanded. One of monospace, proportional, dual-width, or charcell.

width spacing

Here are some examples of Fontcong patterns: Monospace Monospace-12 Monospace-12:bold DejaVu Sans Mono:bold:italic Monospace-12:weight=bold:slant=italic For a more detailed description of Fontcong patterns, see the Fontcong manual, which is distributed with Fontcong and available online at http://fontconfig.org/fontconfig-user.html. The second way to specify a font is to use a GTK font pattern. These have the syntax fontname [properties ] [fontsize ] where fontname is the family name, properties is a list of property values separated by spaces, and fontsize is the point size. The properties that you may specify for GTK font patterns are as follows: Slant properties: Italic or Oblique. If omitted, the default (roman) slant is implied. Weight properties: Bold, Book, Light, Medium, Semi-bold, or Ultra-light. If omitted, Medium weight is implied. Width properties: Semi-Condensed or Condensed. If omitted, a default width is used. Here are some examples of GTK font patterns: Monospace 12 Monospace Bold Italic 12 The third way to specify a font is to use an XLFD (X Logical Font Description). This is the traditional method for specifying fonts under X. Each XLFD consists of fourteen words or numbers, separated by dashes, like this: -misc-fixed-medium-r-semicondensed--13-*-*-*-c-60-iso8859-1 A wildcard character (*) in an XLFD matches any sequence of characters (including none), and ? matches any single character. However, matching is implementation-dependent, and can be inaccurate when wildcards match dashes in a long name. For reliable results, supply all 14 dashes and use wildcards only within a eld. Case is insignicant in an XLFD. The syntax for an XLFD is as follows: -maker-family-weight-slant-widthtype-style ... ...-pixels-height-horiz-vert-spacing-width-registry-encoding The entries have the following meanings:

Chapter 18: Frames and Graphical Displays maker family weight slant widthtype style pixels height The name of the font manufacturer. The name of the font family (e.g. courier).

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The font weightnormally either bold, medium or light. Some font names support other values. The font slantnormally r (roman), i (italic), o (oblique), ri (reverse italic), or ot (other). Some font names support other values. The font widthnormally normal, condensed, semicondensed, or extended. Some font names support other values. An optional additional style name. Usually it is emptymost XLFDs have two hyphens in a row at this point. The font height, in pixels. The font height on the screen, measured in tenths of a printers point. This is the point size of the font, times ten. For a given vertical resolution, height and pixels are proportional; therefore, it is common to specify just one of them and use * for the other. The horizontal resolution, in pixels per inch, of the screen for which the font is intended. The vertical resolution, in pixels per inch, of the screen for which the font is intended. Normally the resolution of the fonts on your system is the right value for your screen; therefore, you normally specify * for this and horiz. This is m (monospace), p (proportional) or c (character cell). The average character width, in pixels, multiplied by ten. The X font character set that the font depicts. (X font character sets are not the same as Emacs character sets, but they are similar.) You can use the xfontsel program to check which choices you have. Normally you should use iso8859 for registry and 1 for encoding.

horiz vert

spacing width registry encoding

The fourth and nal method of specifying a font is to use a font nickname. Certain fonts have shorter nicknames, which you can use instead of a normal font specication. For instance, 6x13 is equivalent to -misc-fixed-medium-r-semicondensed--13-*-*-*-c-60-iso8859-1 On X, Emacs recognizes two types of fonts: client-side fonts, which are provided by the Xft and Fontcong libraries, and server-side fonts, which are provided by the X server itself. Most client-side fonts support advanced font features such as antialiasing and subpixel hinting, while server-side fonts do not. Fontcong and GTK patterns match only client-side fonts. You will probably want to use a xed-width default fontthat is, a font in which all characters have the same width. For Xft and Fontcong fonts, you can use the fc-list command to list the available xed-width fonts, like this:

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fc-list :spacing=mono fc-list :spacing=charcell For server-side X fonts, you can use the xlsfonts program to list the available xed-width fonts, like this: xlsfonts -fn *x* | egrep "^[0-9]+x[0-9]+" xlsfonts -fn *-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-m* xlsfonts -fn *-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-c* Any font with m or c in the spacing eld of the XLFD is a xed-width font. To see what a particular font looks like, use the xfd command. For example: xfd -fn 6x13 displays the entire font 6x13. While running Emacs, you can also set the font of a specic kind of text (see Section 11.8 [Faces], page 75), or a particular frame (see Section 18.11 [Frame Parameters], page 175).

18.9 Speedbar Frames


The speedbar is a special frame for conveniently navigating in or operating on another frame. The speedbar, when it exists, is always associated with a specic frame, called its attached frame ; all speedbar operations act on that frame. Type M-x speedbar to create the speedbar and associate it with the current frame. To dismiss the speedbar, type M-x speedbar again, or select the speedbar and type q. (You can also delete the speedbar frame like any other Emacs frame.) If you wish to associate the speedbar with a dierent frame, dismiss it and call M-x speedbar from that frame. The speedbar can operate in various modes. Its default mode is File Display mode, which shows the les in the current directory of the selected window of the attached frame, one le per line. Clicking on a le name visits that le in the selected window of the attached frame, and clicking on a directory name shows that directory in the speedbar (see Section 18.3 [Mouse References], page 167). Each line also has a box, [+] or <+>, that you can click on to expand the contents of that item. Expanding a directory adds the contents of that directory to the speedbar display, underneath the directorys own line. Expanding an ordinary le adds a list of the tags in that le to the speedbar display; you can click on a tag name to jump to that tag in the selected window of the attached frame. When a le or directory is expanded, the [+] changes to [-]; you can click on that box to contract the item, hiding its contents. You navigate through the speedbar using the keyboard, too. Typing RET while point is on a line in the speedbar is equivalent to clicking the item on the current line, and SPC expands or contracts the item. U displays the parent directory of the current directory. To copy, delete, or rename the le on the current line, type C, D, and R respectively. To create a new directory, type M. Another general-purpose speedbar mode is Buer Display mode; in this mode, the speedbar displays a list of Emacs buers. To switch to this mode, type b in the speedbar. To return to File Display mode, type f. You can also change the display

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mode by clicking mouse-3 anywhere in the speedbar window (or mouse-1 on the mode-line) and selecting Displays in the pop-up menu. Some major modes, including Rmail mode, Info, and GUD, have specialized ways of putting useful items into the speedbar for you to select. For example, in Rmail mode, the speedbar shows a list of Rmail les, and lets you move the current message to another Rmail le by clicking on its <M> box. For more details on using and programming the speedbar, See Section Top in Speedbar Manual .

18.10 Multiple Displays


A single Emacs can talk to more than one X display. Initially, Emacs uses just one displaythe one specied with the DISPLAY environment variable or with the --display option (see Section C.2 [Initial Options], page 507). To connect to another display, use the command make-frame-on-display: M-x make-frame-on-display RET display RET Create a new frame on display display. A single X server can handle more than one screen. When you open frames on two screens belonging to one server, Emacs knows they share a single keyboard, and it treats all the commands arriving from these screens as a single stream of input. When you open frames on dierent X servers, Emacs makes a separate input stream for each server. Each server also has its own selected frame. The commands you enter with a particular X server apply to that servers selected frame.

18.11 Frame Parameters


You can control the default appearance and behavior of all frames by specifying a default list of frame parameters in the variable default-frame-alist. Its value should be a list of entries, each specifying a parameter name and a value for that parameter. These entries take eect whenever Emacs creates a new frame, including the initial frame. For example, you can add the following lines to your init le (see Section 33.4 [Init File], page 461) to set the default frame width to 90 character columns, the default frame height to 40 character rows, and the default font to Monospace-10: (add-to-list default-frame-alist (width . 90)) (add-to-list default-frame-alist (height . 40)) (add-to-list default-frame-alist (font . "Monospace-10")) For a list of frame parameters and their eects, see Section Frame Parameters in The Emacs Lisp Reference Manual . You can also specify a list of frame parameters which apply to just the initial frame, by customizing the variable initial-frame-alist. If Emacs is compiled to use an X toolkit, frame parameters that specify colors and fonts dont aect menus and the menu bar, since those are drawn by the toolkit and not directly by Emacs.

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18.12 Scroll Bars


On graphical displays, there is a scroll bar on the side of each Emacs window. Clicking Mouse-1 on the scroll bars up and down buttons scrolls the window by one line at a time. Clicking Mouse-1 above or below the scroll bars inner box scrolls the window by nearly the entire height of the window, like M-v and C-v respectively (see Section 4.2 [Moving Point], page 18). Dragging the inner box scrolls continuously. If Emacs is compiled on the X Window System without X toolkit support, the scroll bar behaves dierently. Clicking Mouse-1 anywhere on the scroll bar scrolls forward like C-v, while Mouse-3 scrolls backward like M-v. Clicking Mouse-2 in the scroll bar lets you drag the inner box up and down. To toggle the use of scroll bars, type M-x scroll-bar-mode. This command applies to all frames, including frames yet to be created. To toggle scroll bars for just the selected frame, use the command M-x toggle-scroll-bar. To control the use of scroll bars at startup, customize the variable scrollbar-mode. Its value should be either right (put scroll bars on the right side of windows), left (put them on the left), or nil (disable scroll bars). By default, Emacs puts scroll bars on the right if it was compiled with GTK+ support on the X Window System, and on MS-Windows or Mac OS; Emacs puts scroll bars on the left if compiled on the X Window System without GTK+ support (following the old convention for X applications). You can also use the X resource verticalScrollBars to enable or disable the scroll bars (see Section D.1 [Resources], page 521). To control the scroll bar width, change the scroll-bar-width frame parameter (see Section Frame Parameters in The Emacs Lisp Reference Manual ).

18.13 Drag and Drop


In most graphical desktop environments, Emacs has basic support for drag and drop operations. For instance, dropping text onto an Emacs frame inserts the text where it is dropped. Dropping a le onto an Emacs frame visits that le. As a special case, dropping the le on a Dired buer moves or copies the le (according to the conventions of the application it came from) into the directory displayed in that buer. Dropping a le normally visits it in the window you drop it on. If you prefer to visit the le in a new window in such cases, customize the variable dnd-openfile-other-window. The XDND and Motif drag and drop protocols, and the old KDE 1.x protocol, are currently supported.

18.14 Menu Bars


You can toggle the use of menu bars with M-x menu-bar-mode. With no argument, this command toggles Menu Bar mode, a global minor mode. With an argument, the command turns Menu Bar mode on if the argument is positive, o if the argument

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is not positive. To control the use of menu bars at startup, customize the variable menu-bar-mode. Expert users often turn o the menu bar, especially on text terminals, where this makes one additional line available for text. If the menu bar is o, you can still pop up a menu of its contents with C-Mouse-3 on a display which supports pop-up menus. See Section 18.4 [Menu Mouse Clicks], page 168. See Section 1.4 [Menu Bar], page 10, for information on how to invoke commands with the menu bar. See Appendix D [X Resources], page 521, for how to customize the menu bar menus visual appearance.

18.15 Tool Bars


On graphical displays, Emacs puts a tool bar at the top of each frame, just below the menu bar. This is a row of icons which you can click on with the mouse to invoke various commands. The global (default) tool bar contains general commands. Some major modes dene their own tool bars; whenever a buer with such a major mode is current, the modes tool bar replaces the global tool bar. To toggle the use of tool bars, type M-x tool-bar-mode. This command applies to all frames, including frames yet to be created. To control the use of tool bars at startup, customize the variable tool-bar-mode. When Emacs is compiled with GTK+ support, each tool bar item can consist of an image, or a text label, or both. By default, Emacs follows the Gnome desktops tool bar style setting; if none is dened, it displays tool bar items as just images. To impose a specic tool bar style, customize the variable tool-bar-style. You can also control the placement of the tool bar for the GTK+ tool bar with the frame parameter tool-bar-position. See Section Frame Parameters in The Emacs Lisp Reference Manual .

18.16 Using Dialog Boxes


A dialog box is a special kind of menu for asking you a yes-or-no question or some other special question. Many Emacs commands use a dialog box to ask a yes-or-no question, if you used the mouse to invoke the command that led to the question. To disable the use of dialog boxes, change the variable use-dialog-box to nil. In that case, Emacs always performs yes-or-no prompts using the echo area and keyboard input. This variable also controls whether to use le selection windows (but those are not supported on all platforms). A le selection window is a special kind of dialog box for asking for le names. You can customize the variable use-file-dialog to suppress the use of le selection windows, even if you still want other kinds of dialogs. This variable has no eect if you have suppressed all dialog boxes with the variable use-dialog-box. When Emacs is compiled with GTK+ support, it uses the GTK+ le chooser dialog. Emacs adds an additional toggle button to this dialog, which you can use to enable or disable the display of hidden les (les starting with a dot) in that

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dialog. If you want this toggle to be activated by default, change the variable xgtk-show-hidden-files to t. In addition, Emacs adds help text to the GTK+ le chooser dialog; to disable this help text, change the variable x-gtk-file-dialoghelp-text to nil.

18.17 Tooltips
Tooltips are small windows that display text information at the current mouse position. They activate when there is a pause in mouse movement over some signicant piece of text in a window, or the mode line, or some other part of the Emacs frame such as a tool bar button or menu item. You can toggle the use of tooltips with the command M-x tooltip-mode. When Tooltip mode is disabled, the help text is displayed in the echo area instead. To control the use of tooltips at startup, customize the variable tooltip-mode. The variables tooltip-delay species how long Emacs should wait before displaying a tooltip. For additional customization options for displaying tooltips, use M-x customize-group RET tooltip RET. If Emacs is built with GTK+ support, it displays tooltips via GTK+, using the default appearance of GTK+ tooltips. To disable this, change the variable x-gtkuse-system-tooltips to nil. If you do this, or if Emacs is built without GTK+ support, most attributes of the tooltip text are specied by the tooltip face, and by X resources (see Appendix D [X Resources], page 521). GUD tooltips are special tooltips that show the values of variables when debugging a program with GUD. See Section 24.6.2 [Debugger Operation], page 277.

18.18 Mouse Avoidance


On graphical terminals, the mouse pointer may obscure the text in the Emacs frame. Emacs provides two methods to avoid this problem. Firstly, Emacs hides the mouse pointer each time you type a self-inserting character, if the pointer lies inside an Emacs frame; moving the mouse pointer makes it visible again. To disable this feature, set the variable make-pointer-invisible to nil. Secondly, you can use Mouse Avoidance mode, a minor mode, to keep the mouse pointer away from point. To use Mouse Avoidance mode, customize the variable mouse-avoidance-mode. You can set this to various values to move the mouse in several ways: banish exile jump animate Move the mouse to the upper-right corner on any key-press; Move the mouse to the corner only if the cursor gets too close, and allow it to return once the cursor is out of the way; If the cursor gets too close to the mouse, displace the mouse a random distance & direction; As jump, but shows steps along the way for illusion of motion;

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You can also use the command M-x mouse-avoidance-mode to enable the mode. Whenever Mouse Avoidance mode moves the mouse, it also raises the frame.

18.19 Non-Window Terminals


On a text terminal, Emacs can display only one Emacs frame at a time. However, you can still create multiple Emacs frames, and switch between them. Switching frames on these terminals is much like switching between dierent window congurations. Use C-x 5 2 to create a new frame and switch to it; use C-x 5 o to cycle through the existing frames; use C-x 5 0 to delete the current frame. Each frame has a number to distinguish it. If your terminal can display only one frame at a time, the selected frames number n appears near the beginning of the mode line, in the form Fn . Fn is in fact the frames initial name. You can give frames more meaningful names if you wish, and you can select a frame by its name. Use the command M-x set-frame-name RET name RET to specify a new name for the selected frame, and use M-x select-frame-by-name RET name RET to select a frame according to its name. The name you specify appears in the mode line when the frame is selected.

18.20 Using a Mouse in Text Terminals


Some text terminals support mouse clicks in the terminal window. In a terminal emulator which is compatible with xterm, you can use M-x xterm-mouse-mode to give Emacs control over simple uses of the mousebasically, only non-modied single clicks are supported. The normal xterm mouse functionality for such clicks is still available by holding down the SHIFT key when you press the mouse button. Xterm Mouse mode is a global minor mode (see Section 20.2 [Minor Modes], page 205). Repeating the command turns the mode o again. In the console on GNU/Linux, you can use M-x gpm-mouse-mode to enable mouse support. You must have the gpm server installed and running on your system in order for this to work. See Section MS-DOS Mouse in Specialized Emacs Features , for information about mouse support on MS-DOS.

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19 International Character Set Support


Emacs supports a wide variety of international character sets, including European and Vietnamese variants of the Latin alphabet, as well as Cyrillic, Devanagari (for Hindi and Marathi), Ethiopic, Greek, Han (for Chinese and Japanese), Hangul (for Korean), Hebrew, IPA, Kannada, Lao, Malayalam, Tamil, Thai, Tibetan, and Vietnamese scripts. Emacs also supports various encodings of these characters that are used by other internationalized software, such as word processors and mailers. Emacs allows editing text with international characters by supporting all the related activities: You can visit les with non-ASCII characters, save non-ASCII text, and pass non-ASCII text between Emacs and programs it invokes (such as compilers, spell-checkers, and mailers). Setting your language environment (see Section 19.3 [Language Environments], page 183) takes care of setting up the coding systems and other options for a specic language or culture. Alternatively, you can specify how Emacs should encode or decode text for each command; see Section 19.10 [Text Coding], page 193. You can display non-ASCII characters encoded by the various scripts. This works by using appropriate fonts on graphics displays (see Section 19.15 [Dening Fontsets], page 198), and by sending special codes to text displays (see Section 19.13 [Terminal Coding], page 196). If some characters are displayed incorrectly, refer to Section 19.17 [Undisplayable Characters], page 200, which describes possible problems and explains how to solve them. Characters from scripts whose natural ordering of text is from right to left are reordered for display (see Section 19.20 [Bidirectional Editing], page 202). These scripts include Arabic, Hebrew, Syriac, Thaana, and a few others. You can insert non-ASCII characters or search for them. To do that, you can specify an input method (see Section 19.5 [Select Input Method], page 186) suitable for your language, or use the default input method set up when you chose your language environment. If your keyboard can produce nonASCII characters, you can select an appropriate keyboard coding system (see Section 19.13 [Terminal Coding], page 196), and Emacs will accept those characters. Latin-1 characters can also be input by using the C-x 8 prex, see Section 19.18 [Unibyte Mode], page 200. With the X Window System, your locale should be set to an appropriate value to make sure Emacs interprets keyboard input correctly; see Section 19.3 [Language Environments], page 183. The rest of this chapter describes these issues in detail.

19.1 Introduction to International Character Sets


The users of international character sets and scripts have established many moreor-less standard coding systems for storing les. These coding systems are typically multibyte, meaning that sequences of two or more bytes are used to represent individual non-ASCII characters.

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Internally, Emacs uses its own multibyte character encoding, which is a superset of the Unicode standard. This internal encoding allows characters from almost every known script to be intermixed in a single buer or string. Emacs translates between the multibyte character encoding and various other coding systems when reading and writing les, and when exchanging data with subprocesses. The command C-h h (view-hello-file) displays the le etc/HELLO, which illustrates various scripts by showing how to say hello in many languages. If some characters cant be displayed on your terminal, they appear as ? or as hollow boxes (see Section 19.17 [Undisplayable Characters], page 200). Keyboards, even in the countries where these character sets are used, generally dont have keys for all the characters in them. You can insert characters that your keyboard does not support, using C-q (quoted-insert) or C-x 8 RET (ucsinsert). See Section 4.1 [Inserting Text], page 17. Emacs also supports various input methods, typically one for each script or language, which make it easier to type characters in the script. See Section 19.4 [Input Methods], page 185. The prex key C-x RET is used for commands that pertain to multibyte characters, coding systems, and input methods. The command C-x = (what-cursor-position) shows information about the character at point. In addition to the character position, which was described in Section 4.9 [Position Info], page 23, this command displays how the character is encoded. For instance, it displays the following line in the echo area for the character c:
Char: c (99, #o143, #x63) point=28062 of 36168 (78%) column=53

The four values after Char: describe the character that follows point, rst by showing it and then by giving its character code in decimal, octal and hex. For a non-ASCII multibyte character, these are followed by file and the characters representation, in hex, in the buers coding system, if that coding system encodes the character safely and with a single byte (see Section 19.6 [Coding Systems], page 188). If the characters encoding is longer than one byte, Emacs shows file .... As a special case, if the character lies in the range 128 (0200 octal) through 159 (0237 octal), it stands for a raw byte that does not correspond to any specic displayable character. Such a character lies within the eight-bit-control character set, and is displayed as an escaped octal character code. In this case, C-x = shows part of display ... instead of file. With a prex argument (C-u C-x =), this command displays a detailed description of the character in a window: The character set name, and the codes that identify the character within that character set; ASCII characters are identied as belonging to the ascii character set. The characters syntax and categories. The characters encodings, both internally in the buer, and externally if you were to save the le. What keys to type to input the character in the current input method (if it

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If you are running Emacs on a graphical display, the font name and glyph code for the character. If you are running Emacs on a text terminal, the code(s) sent to the terminal. The characters text properties (see Section Text Properties in the Emacs Lisp Reference Manual ), including any non-default faces used to display the character, and any overlays containing it (see Section Overlays in the same manual ). Heres an example showing the Latin-1 character A with grave accent, in a buer whose coding system is utf-8-unix:
position: character: preferred charset: code point in charset: syntax: category: 1 of 1 (0%), column: 0 ` A (displayed as ` A) (codepoint 192, #o300, #xc0) unicode (Unicode (ISO10646)) 0xC0 w which means: word .:Base, L:Left-to-right (strong), j:Japanese, l:Latin, v:Viet buffer code: #xC3 #x80 file code: not encodable by coding system undecided-unix display: by this font (glyph code) xft:-unknown-DejaVu Sans Mono-normal-normalnormal-*-13-*-*-*-m-0-iso10646-1 (#x82)

Character code properties: customize what to show name: LATIN CAPITAL LETTER A WITH GRAVE old-name: LATIN CAPITAL LETTER A GRAVE general-category: Lu (Letter, Uppercase) decomposition: (65 768) (A )

19.2 Disabling Multibyte Characters


By default, Emacs starts in multibyte mode: it stores the contents of buers and strings using an internal encoding that represents non-ASCII characters using multibyte sequences. Multibyte mode allows you to use all the supported languages and scripts without limitations. Under very special circumstances, you may want to disable multibyte character support, for a specic buer. When multibyte characters are disabled in a buer, we call that unibyte mode. In unibyte mode, each character in the buer has a character code ranging from 0 through 255 (0377 octal); 0 through 127 (0177 octal) represent ASCII characters, and 128 (0200 octal) through 255 (0377 octal) represent non-ASCII characters. To edit a particular le in unibyte representation, visit it using find-fileliterally. See Section 15.2 [Visiting], page 125. You can convert a multibyte buer to unibyte by saving it to a le, killing the buer, and visiting the le again with find-file-literally. Alternatively, you can use C-x RET c (universalcoding-system-argument) and specify raw-text as the coding system with which to visit or save a le. See Section 19.10 [Text Coding], page 193. Unlike find-

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file-literally, nding a le as raw-text doesnt disable format conversion, uncompression, or auto mode selection. Emacs normally loads Lisp les as multibyte. This includes the Emacs initialization le, .emacs, and the initialization les of packages such as Gnus. However, you can specify unibyte loading for a particular Lisp le, by adding an entry unibyte: t in a le local variables section (see Section 33.2.4 [File Variables], page 447). Then that le is always loaded as unibyte text. Note that this does not represent a real unibyte variable, rather it just acts as an indicator to Emacs in the same way as coding does (see Section 19.8 [Specify Coding], page 192). Note also that this feature only applies to loading Lisp les for evaluation, not to visiting them for editing. You can also load a Lisp le as unibyte, on any one occasion, by typing C-x RET c raw-text RET immediately before loading it. The buer-local variable enable-multibyte-characters is non-nil in multibyte buers, and nil in unibyte ones. The mode line also indicates whether a buer is multibyte or not. See Section 1.3 [Mode Line], page 8. With a graphical display, in a multibyte buer, the portion of the mode line that indicates the character set has a tooltip that (amongst other things) says that the buer is multibyte. In a unibyte buer, the character set indicator is absent. Thus, in a unibyte buer (when using a graphical display) there is normally nothing before the indication of the visited les end-of-line convention (colon, backslash, etc.), unless you are using an input method. You can turn o multibyte support in a specic buer by invoking the command toggle-enable-multibyte-characters in that buer.

19.3 Language Environments


All supported character sets are supported in Emacs buers whenever multibyte characters are enabled; there is no need to select a particular language in order to display its characters. However, it is important to select a language environment in order to set various defaults. Roughly speaking, the language environment represents a choice of preferred script rather than a choice of language. The language environment controls which coding systems to recognize when reading text (see Section 19.7 [Recognize Coding], page 190). This applies to les, incoming mail, and any other text you read into Emacs. It may also specify the default coding system to use when you create a le. Each language environment also species a default input method. To select a language environment, customize current-language-environment or use the command M-x set-language-environment. It makes no dierence which buer is current when you use this command, because the eects apply globally to the Emacs session. The supported language environments (see the variable language-info-alist) include: ASCII, Belarusian, Bengali, Brazilian Portuguese, Bulgarian, Cham, Chinese-BIG5, Chinese-CNS, Chinese-EUC-TW, Chinese-GB, ChineseGBK, Chinese-GB18030, Croatian, Cyrillic-ALT, Cyrillic-ISO, CyrillicKOI8, Czech, Devanagari, Dutch, English, Esperanto, Ethiopic, French, Georgian, German, Greek, Gujarati, Hebrew, IPA, Italian, Japanese,

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Kannada, Khmer, Korean, Lao, Latin-1, Latin-2, Latin-3, Latin-4, Latin5, Latin-6, Latin-7, Latin-8 (Celtic), Latin-9 (updated Latin-1 with the Euro sign), Latvian, Lithuanian, Malayalam, Oriya, Polish, Punjabi, Romanian, Russian, Sinhala, Slovak, Slovenian, Spanish, Swedish, TaiViet, Tajik, Tamil, Telugu, Thai, Tibetan, Turkish, UTF-8 (for a setup which prefers Unicode characters and les encoded in UTF-8), Ukrainian, Vietnamese, Welsh, and Windows-1255 (for a setup which prefers Cyrillic characters and les encoded in Windows-1255). To display the script(s) used by your language environment on a graphical display, you need to have suitable fonts. See Section 19.14 [Fontsets], page 197, for more details about setting up your fonts. Some operating systems let you specify the character-set locale you are using by setting the locale environment variables LC_ALL, LC_CTYPE, or LANG. (If more than one of these is set, the rst one that is nonempty species your locale for this purpose.) During startup, Emacs looks up your character-set locales name in the system locale alias table, matches its canonical name against entries in the value of the variables locale-charset-language-names and locale-language-names (the former overrides the latter), and selects the corresponding language environment if a match is found. It also adjusts the display table and terminal coding system, the locale coding system, the preferred coding system as needed for the locale, andlast but not leastthe way Emacs decodes non-ASCII characters sent by your keyboard. If you modify the LC_ALL, LC_CTYPE, or LANG environment variables while running Emacs (by using M-x setenv), you may want to invoke the set-localeenvironment function afterwards to readjust the language environment from the new locale. The set-locale-environment function normally uses the preferred coding system established by the language environment to decode system messages. But if your locale matches an entry in the variable locale-preferred-coding-systems, Emacs uses the corresponding coding system instead. For example, if the locale ja_JP.PCK matches japanese-shift-jis in locale-preferred-codingsystems, Emacs uses that encoding even though it might normally use japaneseiso-8bit. You can override the language environment chosen at startup with explicit use of the command set-language-environment, or with customization of currentlanguage-environment in your init le. To display information about the eects of a certain language environment langenv, use the command C-h L lang-env RET (describe-language-environment). This tells you which languages this language environment is useful for, and lists the character sets, coding systems, and input methods that go with it. It also shows some sample text to illustrate scripts used in this language environment. If you give an empty input for lang-env, this command describes the chosen language environment. You can customize any language environment with the normal hook setlanguage-environment-hook. The command set-language-environment runs that hook after setting up the new language environment. The hook functions

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can test for a specic language environment by checking the variable currentlanguage-environment. This hook is where you should put non-default settings for specic language environments, such as coding systems for keyboard input and terminal output, the default input method, etc. Before it starts to set up the new language environment, set-languageenvironment rst runs the hook exit-language-environment-hook. This hook is useful for undoing customizations that were made with set-languageenvironment-hook. For instance, if you set up a special key binding in a specic language environment using set-language-environment-hook, you should set up exit-language-environment-hook to restore the normal binding for that key.

19.4 Input Methods


An input method is a kind of character conversion designed specically for interactive input. In Emacs, typically each language has its own input method; sometimes several languages that use the same characters can share one input method. A few languages support several input methods. The simplest kind of input method works by mapping ASCII letters into another alphabet; this allows you to use one other alphabet instead of ASCII. The Greek and Russian input methods work this way. A more powerful technique is composition: converting sequences of characters into one letter. Many European input methods use composition to produce a single non-ASCII letter from a sequence that consists of a letter followed by accent characters (or vice versa). For example, some methods convert the sequence o ^ into a single accented letter. These input methods have no special commands of their own; all they do is compose sequences of printing characters. The input methods for syllabic scripts typically use mapping followed by composition. The input methods for Thai and Korean work this way. First, letters are mapped into symbols for particular sounds or tone marks; then, sequences of these that make up a whole syllable are mapped into one syllable sign. Chinese and Japanese require more complex methods. In Chinese input methods, rst you enter the phonetic spelling of a Chinese word (in input method chinese-py, among others), or a sequence of portions of the character (input methods chinese-4corner and chinese-sw, and others). One input sequence typically corresponds to many possible Chinese characters. You select the one you mean using keys such as C-f, C-b, C-n, C-p (or the arrow keys), and digits, which have special meanings in this situation. The possible characters are conceptually arranged in several rows, with each row holding up to 10 alternatives. Normally, Emacs displays just one row at a time, in the echo area; (i /j ) appears at the beginning, to indicate that this is the i th row out of a total of j rows. Type C-n or C-p to display the next row or the previous row. Type C-f and C-b to move forward and backward among the alternatives in the current row. As you do this, Emacs highlights the current alternative with a special color; type C-SPC to select the current alternative and use it as input.

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The alternatives in the row are also numbered; the number appears before the alternative. Typing a number selects the associated alternative of the current row and uses it as input. TAB in these Chinese input methods displays a buer showing all the possible characters at once; then clicking Mouse-2 on one of them selects that alternative. The keys C-f, C-b, C-n, C-p, and digits continue to work as usual, but they do the highlighting in the buer showing the possible characters, rather than in the echo area. In Japanese input methods, rst you input a whole word using phonetic spelling; then, after the word is in the buer, Emacs converts it into one or more characters using a large dictionary. One phonetic spelling corresponds to a number of dierent Japanese words; to select one of them, use C-n and C-p to cycle through the alternatives. Sometimes it is useful to cut o input method processing so that the characters you have just entered will not combine with subsequent characters. For example, in input method latin-1-postfix, the sequence o ^ combines to form an o with an accent. What if you want to enter them as separate characters? One way is to type the accent twice; this is a special feature for entering the separate letter and accent. For example, o ^ ^ gives you the two characters o^. Another way is to type another letter after the osomething that wont combine with thatand immediately delete it. For example, you could type o o DEL ^ to get separate o and ^. Another method, more general but not quite as easy to type, is to use C-\ C-\ between two characters to stop them from combining. This is the command C-\ (toggle-input-method) used twice. C-\ C-\ is especially useful inside an incremental search, because it stops waiting for more characters to combine, and starts searching for what you have already entered. To nd out how to input the character after point using the current input method, type C-u C-x =. See Section 4.9 [Position Info], page 23. The variables input-method-highlight-flag and input-method-verboseflag control how input methods explain what is happening. If input-methodhighlight-flag is non-nil, the partial sequence is highlighted in the buer (for most input methodssome disable this feature). If input-method-verbose-flag is non-nil, the list of possible characters to type next is displayed in the echo area (but not when you are in the minibuer). Another facility for typing characters not on your keyboard is by using C-x 8 RET (ucs-insert) to insert a single character based on its Unicode name or code-point; see Section 4.1 [Inserting Text], page 17.

19.5 Selecting an Input Method


C-\ Enable or disable use of the selected input method (toggle-inputmethod).

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C-x RET C-\ method RET Select a new input method for the current buer (set-input-method). C-h I method RET C-h C-\ method RET Describe the input method method (describe-input-method). By default, it describes the current input method (if any). This description should give you the full details of how to use any particular input method. M-x list-input-methods Display a list of all the supported input methods. To choose an input method for the current buer, use C-x RET C-\ (set-inputmethod). This command reads the input method name from the minibuer; the name normally starts with the language environment that it is meant to be used with. The variable current-input-method records which input method is selected. Input methods use various sequences of ASCII characters to stand for non-ASCII characters. Sometimes it is useful to turn o the input method temporarily. To do this, type C-\ (toggle-input-method). To reenable the input method, type C-\ again. If you type C-\ and you have not yet selected an input method, it prompts you to specify one. This has the same eect as using C-x RET C-\ to specify an input method. When invoked with a numeric argument, as in C-u C-\, toggle-input-method always prompts you for an input method, suggesting the most recently selected one as the default. Selecting a language environment species a default input method for use in various buers. When you have a default input method, you can select it in the current buer by typing C-\. The variable default-input-method species the default input method (nil means there is none). In some language environments, which support several dierent input methods, you might want to use an input method dierent from the default chosen by setlanguage-environment. You can instruct Emacs to select a dierent default input method for a certain language environment, if you wish, by using set-languageenvironment-hook (see Section 19.3 [Language Environments], page 183). For example: (defun my-chinese-setup () "Set up my private Chinese environment." (if (equal current-language-environment "Chinese-GB") (setq default-input-method "chinese-tonepy"))) (add-hook set-language-environment-hook my-chinese-setup) This sets the default input method to be chinese-tonepy whenever you choose a Chinese-GB language environment. You can instruct Emacs to activate a certain input method automatically. For example: (add-hook text-mode-hook

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(lambda () (set-input-method "german-prefix"))) This automatically activates the input method german-prex in Text mode. Some input methods for alphabetic scripts work by (in eect) remapping the keyboard to emulate various keyboard layouts commonly used for those scripts. How to do this remapping properly depends on your actual keyboard layout. To specify which layout your keyboard has, use the command M-x quail-set-keyboard-layout. You can use the command M-x quail-show-key to show what key (or key sequence) to type in order to input the character following point, using the selected keyboard layout. The command C-u C-x = also shows that information, in addition to other information about the character. M-x list-input-methods displays a list of all the supported input methods. The list gives information about each input method, including the string that stands for it in the mode line.

19.6 Coding Systems


Users of various languages have established many more-or-less standard coding systems for representing them. Emacs does not use these coding systems internally; instead, it converts from various coding systems to its own system when reading data, and converts the internal coding system to other coding systems when writing data. Conversion is possible in reading or writing les, in sending or receiving from the terminal, and in exchanging data with subprocesses. Emacs assigns a name to each coding system. Most coding systems are used for one language, and the name of the coding system starts with the language name. Some coding systems are used for several languages; their names usually start with iso. There are also special coding systems, such as no-conversion, raw-text, and emacs-internal. A special class of coding systems, collectively known as codepages, is designed to support text encoded by MS-Windows and MS-DOS software. The names of these coding systems are cpnnnn , where nnnn is a 3- or 4-digit number of the codepage. You can use these encodings just like any other coding system; for example, to visit a le encoded in codepage 850, type C-x RET c cp850 RET C-x C-f filename RET. In addition to converting various representations of non-ASCII characters, a coding system can perform end-of-line conversion. Emacs handles three dierent conventions for how to separate lines in a le: newline (unix), carriage-return linefeed (dos), and just carriage-return (mac). C-h C coding RET Describe coding system coding (describe-coding-system). C-h C RET Describe the coding systems currently in use.

M-x list-coding-systems Display a list of all the supported coding systems. The command C-h C (describe-coding-system) displays information about particular coding systems, including the end-of-line conversion specied by those

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coding systems. You can specify a coding system name as the argument; alternatively, with an empty argument, it describes the coding systems currently selected for various purposes, both in the current buer and as the defaults, and the priority list for recognizing coding systems (see Section 19.7 [Recognize Coding], page 190). To display a list of all the supported coding systems, type M-x list-coding-systems. The list gives information about each coding system, including the letter that stands for it in the mode line (see Section 1.3 [Mode Line], page 8). Each of the coding systems that appear in this listexcept for no-conversion, which means no conversion of any kindspecies how and whether to convert printing characters, but leaves the choice of end-of-line conversion to be decided based on the contents of each le. For example, if the le appears to use the sequence carriage-return linefeed to separate lines, DOS end-of-line conversion will be used. Each of the listed coding systems has three variants, which specify exactly what to do for end-of-line conversion: ...-unix Dont do any end-of-line conversion; assume the le uses newline to separate lines. (This is the convention normally used on Unix and GNU systems, and Mac OS X.) Assume the le uses carriage-return linefeed to separate lines, and do the appropriate conversion. (This is the convention normally used on Microsoft systems.1 ) Assume the le uses carriage-return to separate lines, and do the appropriate conversion. (This was the convention used on the Macintosh system prior to OS X.)

...-dos

...-mac

These variant coding systems are omitted from the list-coding-systems display for brevity, since they are entirely predictable. For example, the coding system iso-latin-1 has variants iso-latin-1-unix, iso-latin-1-dos and iso-latin1-mac. The coding systems unix, dos, and mac are aliases for undecided-unix, undecided-dos, and undecided-mac, respectively. These coding systems specify only the end-of-line conversion, and leave the character code conversion to be deduced from the text itself. The coding system raw-text is good for a le which is mainly ASCII text, but may contain byte values above 127 that are not meant to encode non-ASCII characters. With raw-text, Emacs copies those byte values unchanged, and sets enable-multibyte-characters to nil in the current buer so that they will be interpreted properly. raw-text handles end-of-line conversion in the usual way, based on the data encountered, and has the usual three variants to specify the kind of end-of-line conversion to use. In contrast, the coding system no-conversion species no character code conversion at allnone for non-ASCII byte values and none for end of line. This is
1

It is also specied for MIME text/* bodies and in other network transport contexts. It is dierent from the SGML reference syntax record-start/record-end format, which Emacs doesnt support directly.

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useful for reading or writing binary les, tar les, and other les that must be examined verbatim. It, too, sets enable-multibyte-characters to nil. The easiest way to edit a le with no conversion of any kind is with the M-x find-file-literally command. This uses no-conversion, and also suppresses other Emacs features that might convert the le contents before you see them. See Section 15.2 [Visiting], page 125. The coding system emacs-internal (or utf-8-emacs, which is equivalent) means that the le contains non-ASCII characters stored with the internal Emacs encoding. This coding system handles end-of-line conversion based on the data encountered, and has the usual three variants to specify the kind of end-of-line conversion.

19.7 Recognizing Coding Systems


Whenever Emacs reads a given piece of text, it tries to recognize which coding system to use. This applies to les being read, output from subprocesses, text from X selections, etc. Emacs can select the right coding system automatically most of the timeonce you have specied your preferences. Some coding systems can be recognized or distinguished by which byte sequences appear in the data. However, there are coding systems that cannot be distinguished, not even potentially. For example, there is no way to distinguish between Latin-1 and Latin-2; they use the same byte values with dierent meanings. Emacs handles this situation by means of a priority list of coding systems. Whenever Emacs reads a le, if you do not specify the coding system to use, Emacs checks the data against each coding system, starting with the rst in priority and working down the list, until it nds a coding system that ts the data. Then it converts the le contents assuming that they are represented in this coding system. The priority list of coding systems depends on the selected language environment (see Section 19.3 [Language Environments], page 183). For example, if you use French, you probably want Emacs to prefer Latin-1 to Latin-2; if you use Czech, you probably want Latin-2 to be preferred. This is one of the reasons to specify a language environment. However, you can alter the coding system priority list in detail with the command M-x prefer-coding-system. This command reads the name of a coding system from the minibuer, and adds it to the front of the priority list, so that it is preferred to all others. If you use this command several times, each use adds one element to the front of the priority list. If you use a coding system that species the end-of-line conversion type, such as iso-8859-1-dos, what this means is that Emacs should attempt to recognize iso-8859-1 with priority, and should use DOS end-of-line conversion when it does recognize iso-8859-1. Sometimes a le name indicates which coding system to use for the le. The variable file-coding-system-alist species this correspondence. There is a special function modify-coding-system-alist for adding elements to this list. For exam-

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ple, to read and write all .txt les using the coding system chinese-iso-8bit, you can execute this Lisp expression:
(modify-coding-system-alist file "\\.txt\\" chinese-iso-8bit)

The rst argument should be file, the second argument should be a regular expression that determines which les this applies to, and the third argument says which coding system to use for these les. Emacs recognizes which kind of end-of-line conversion to use based on the contents of the le: if it sees only carriage-returns, or only carriage-return linefeed sequences, then it chooses the end-of-line conversion accordingly. You can inhibit the automatic use of end-of-line conversion by setting the variable inhibit-eolconversion to non-nil. If you do that, DOS-style les will be displayed with the ^M characters visible in the buer; some people prefer this to the more subtle (DOS) end-of-line type indication near the left edge of the mode line (see Section 1.3 [Mode Line], page 8). By default, the automatic detection of coding system is sensitive to escape sequences. If Emacs sees a sequence of characters that begin with an escape character, and the sequence is valid as an ISO-2022 code, that tells Emacs to use one of the ISO-2022 encodings to decode the le. However, there may be cases that you want to read escape sequences in a le as is. In such a case, you can set the variable inhibit-iso-escape-detection to non-nil. Then the code detection ignores any escape sequences, and never uses an ISO-2022 encoding. The result is that all escape sequences become visible in the buer. The default value of inhibit-iso-escape-detection is nil. We recommend that you not change it permanently, only for one specic operation. Thats because some Emacs Lisp source les in the Emacs distribution contain non-ASCII characters encoded in the coding system iso-2022-7bit, and they wont be decoded correctly when you visit those les if you suppress the escape sequence detection. The variables auto-coding-alist and auto-coding-regexp-alist are the strongest way to specify the coding system for certain patterns of le names, or for les containing certain patterns, respectively. These variables even override -*-coding:-*- tags in the le itself (see Section 19.8 [Specify Coding], page 192). For example, Emacs uses auto-coding-alist for tar and archive les, to prevent it from being confused by a -*-coding:-*- tag in a member of the archive and thinking it applies to the archive le as a whole. Another way to specify a coding system is with the variable auto-codingfunctions. For example, one of the builtin auto-coding-functions detects the encoding for XML les. Unlike the previous two, this variable does not override any -*-coding:-*- tag. When you get new mail in Rmail, each message is translated automatically from the coding system it is written in, as if it were a separate le. This uses the priority list of coding systems that you have specied. If a MIME message species a character set, Rmail obeys that specication. For reading and saving Rmail les themselves, Emacs uses the coding system specied by the variable rmail-file-

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coding-system. The default value is nil, which means that Rmail les are not translated (they are read and written in the Emacs internal character code).

19.8 Specifying a Files Coding System


If Emacs recognizes the encoding of a le incorrectly, you can reread the le using the correct coding system with C-x RET r (revert-buffer-with-coding-system). This command prompts for the coding system to use. To see what coding system Emacs actually used to decode the le, look at the coding system mnemonic letter near the left edge of the mode line (see Section 1.3 [Mode Line], page 8), or type C-h C (describe-coding-system). You can specify the coding system for a particular le in the le itself, using the -*-...-*- construct at the beginning, or a local variables list at the end (see Section 33.2.4 [File Variables], page 447). You do this by dening a value for the variable named coding. Emacs does not really have a variable coding; instead of setting a variable, this uses the specied coding system for the le. For example, -*-mode: C; coding: latin-1;-*- species use of the Latin-1 coding system, as well as C mode. When you specify the coding explicitly in the le, that overrides file-coding-system-alist.

19.9 Choosing Coding Systems for Output


Once Emacs has chosen a coding system for a buer, it stores that coding system in buffer-file-coding-system. That makes it the default for operations that write from this buer into a le, such as save-buffer and write-region. You can specify a dierent coding system for further le output from the buer using set-buffer-file-coding-system (see Section 19.10 [Text Coding], page 193). You can insert any character Emacs supports into any Emacs buer, but most coding systems can only handle a subset of these characters. Therefore, its possible that the characters you insert cannot be encoded with the coding system that will be used to save the buer. For example, you could visit a text le in Polish, encoded in iso-8859-2, and add some Russian words to it. When you save that buer, Emacs cannot use the current value of buffer-file-coding-system, because the characters you added cannot be encoded by that coding system. When that happens, Emacs tries the most-preferred coding system (set by M-x prefer-coding-system or M-x set-language-environment). If that coding system can safely encode all of the characters in the buer, Emacs uses it, and stores its value in buffer-file-coding-system. Otherwise, Emacs displays a list of coding systems suitable for encoding the buers contents, and asks you to choose one of those coding systems. If you insert the unsuitable characters in a mail message, Emacs behaves a bit dierently. It additionally checks whether the most-preferred coding system is recommended for use in MIME messages; if not, it informs you of this fact and prompts you for another coding system. This is so you wont inadvertently send a message encoded in a way that your recipients mail software will have diculty

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decoding. (You can still use an unsuitable coding system if you enter its name at the prompt.) When you send a mail message (see Chapter 29 [Sending Mail], page 367), Emacs has four dierent ways to determine the coding system to use for encoding the message text. It tries the buers own value of buffer-file-coding-system, if that is non-nil. Otherwise, it uses the value of sendmail-coding-system, if that is non-nil. The third way is to use the default coding system for new les, which is controlled by your choice of language environment, if that is non-nil. If all of these three values are nil, Emacs encodes outgoing mail using the Latin-1 coding system.

19.10 Specifying a Coding System for File Text


In cases where Emacs does not automatically choose the right coding system for a les contents, you can use these commands to specify one: C-x RET f coding RET Use coding system coding to save or revisit the le in the current buer (set-buffer-file-coding-system). C-x RET c coding RET Specify coding system coding for the immediately following command (universal-coding-system-argument). C-x RET r coding RET Revisit the current le using the coding system coding (revertbuffer-with-coding-system). M-x recode-region RET right RET wrong RET Convert a region that was decoded using coding system wrong, decoding it using coding system right instead. The command C-x RET f (set-buffer-file-coding-system) sets the le coding system for the current buerin other words, it says which coding system to use when saving or reverting the visited le. You specify which coding system using the minibuer. If you specify a coding system that cannot handle all of the characters in the buer, Emacs warns you about the troublesome characters when you actually save the buer. You can also use this command to specify the end-of-line conversion (see Section 19.6 [Coding Systems], page 188) for encoding the current buer. For example, C-x RET f dos RET will cause Emacs to save the current buers text with DOS-style carriage-return linefeed line endings. Another way to specify the coding system for a le is when you visit the le. First use the command C-x RET c (universal-coding-system-argument); this command uses the minibuer to read a coding system name. After you exit the minibuer, the specied coding system is used for the immediately following command. So if the immediately following command is C-x C-f, for example, it reads the le using that coding system (and records the coding system for when you later

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save the le). Or if the immediately following command is C-x C-w, it writes the le using that coding system. When you specify the coding system for saving in this way, instead of with C-x RET f, there is no warning if the buer contains characters that the coding system cannot handle. Other le commands aected by a specied coding system include C-x i and C-x C-v, as well as the other-window variants of C-x C-f. C-x RET c also aects commands that start subprocesses, including M-x shell (see Section 31.3 [Shell], page 401). If the immediately following command does not use the coding system, then C-x RET c ultimately has no eect. An easy way to visit a le with no conversion is with the M-x find-file-literally command. See Section 15.2 [Visiting], page 125. The default value of the variable buffer-file-coding-system species the choice of coding system to use when you create a new le. It applies when you nd a new le, and when you create a buer and then save it in a le. Selecting a language environment typically sets this variable to a good choice of default coding system for that language environment. If you visit a le with a wrong coding system, you can correct this with C-x RET r (revert-buffer-with-coding-system). This visits the current le again, using a coding system you specify. If a piece of text has already been inserted into a buer using the wrong coding system, you can redo the decoding of it using M-x recode-region. This prompts you for the proper coding system, then for the wrong coding system that was actually used, and does the conversion. It rst encodes the region using the wrong coding system, then decodes it again using the proper coding system.

19.11 Coding Systems for Interprocess Communication


This section explains how to specify coding systems for use in communication with other processes. C-x RET x coding RET Use coding system coding for transferring selections to and from other graphical applications (set-selection-coding-system). C-x RET X coding RET Use coding system coding for transferring one selectionthe next oneto or from another graphical application (set-next-selectioncoding-system). C-x RET p input-coding RET output-coding RET Use coding systems input-coding and output-coding for subprocess input and output in the current buer (set-buffer-process-codingsystem). The command C-x RET x (set-selection-coding-system) species the coding system for sending selected text to other windowing applications, and for receiving the text of selections made in other applications. This command applies to all subsequent selections, until you override it by using the command again. The

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command C-x RET X (set-next-selection-coding-system) species the coding system for the next selection made in Emacs or read by Emacs. The variable x-select-request-type species the data type to request from the X Window System for receiving text selections from other applications. If the value is nil (the default), Emacs tries UTF8_STRING and COMPOUND_TEXT, in this order, and uses various heuristics to choose the more appropriate of the two results; if none of these succeed, Emacs falls back on STRING. If the value of x-selectrequest-type is one of the symbols COMPOUND_TEXT, UTF8_STRING, STRING, or TEXT, Emacs uses only that request type. If the value is a list of some of these symbols, Emacs tries only the request types in the list, in order, until one of them succeeds, or until the list is exhausted. The command C-x RET p (set-buffer-process-coding-system) species the coding system for input and output to a subprocess. This command applies to the current buer; normally, each subprocess has its own buer, and thus you can use this command to specify translation to and from a particular subprocess by giving the command in the corresponding buer. You can also use C-x RET c (universal-coding-system-argument) just before the command that runs or starts a subprocess, to specify the coding system for communicating with that subprocess. See Section 19.10 [Text Coding], page 193. The default for translation of process input and output depends on the current language environment. The variable locale-coding-system species a coding system to use when encoding and decoding system strings such as system error messages and formattime-string formats and time stamps. That coding system is also used for decoding non-ASCII keyboard input on the X Window System. You should choose a coding system that is compatible with the underlying systems text representation, which is normally specied by one of the environment variables LC_ALL, LC_CTYPE, and LANG. (The rst one, in the order specied above, whose value is nonempty is the one that determines the text representation.)

19.12 Coding Systems for File Names


C-x RET F coding RET Use coding system coding for encoding and decoding le names (setfile-name-coding-system). The command C-x RET F (set-file-name-coding-system) species a coding system to use for encoding le names. It has no eect on reading and writing the contents of les. In fact, all this command does is set the value of the variable file-namecoding-system. If you set the variable to a coding system name (as a Lisp symbol or a string), Emacs encodes le names using that coding system for all le operations. This makes it possible to use non-ASCII characters in le namesor, at least, those non-ASCII characters that the specied coding system can encode. If file-name-coding-system is nil, Emacs uses a default coding system determined by the selected language environment, and stored in the default-file-

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name-coding-system variable. In the default language environment, non-ASCII characters in le names are not encoded specially; they appear in the le system using the internal Emacs representation. Warning: if you change file-name-coding-system (or the language environment) in the middle of an Emacs session, problems can result if you have already visited les whose names were encoded using the earlier coding system and cannot be encoded (or are encoded dierently) under the new coding system. If you try to save one of these buers under the visited le name, saving may use the wrong le name, or it may encounter an error. If such a problem happens, use C-x C-w to specify a new le name for that buer. If a mistake occurs when encoding a le name, use the command M-x recode-file-name to change the le names coding system. This prompts for an existing le name, its old coding system, and the coding system to which you wish to convert.

19.13 Coding Systems for Terminal I/O


C-x RET t coding RET Use coding system coding for terminal output (set-terminalcoding-system). C-x RET k coding RET Use coding system coding for keyboard input (set-keyboardcoding-system). The command C-x RET t (set-terminal-coding-system) species the coding system for terminal output. If you specify a character code for terminal output, all characters output to the terminal are translated into that coding system. This feature is useful for certain character-only terminals built to support specic languages or character setsfor example, European terminals that support one of the ISO Latin character sets. You need to specify the terminal coding system when using multibyte text, so that Emacs knows which characters the terminal can actually handle. By default, output to the terminal is not translated at all, unless Emacs can deduce the proper coding system from your terminal type or your locale specication (see Section 19.3 [Language Environments], page 183). The command C-x RET k (set-keyboard-coding-system), or the variable keyboard-coding-system, species the coding system for keyboard input. Character-code translation of keyboard input is useful for terminals with keys that send non-ASCII graphic charactersfor example, some terminals designed for ISO Latin-1 or subsets of it. By default, keyboard input is translated based on your system locale setting. If your terminal does not really support the encoding implied by your locale (for example, if you nd it inserts a non-ASCII character if you type M-i), you will need to set keyboard-coding-system to nil to turn o encoding. You can do this by putting

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(set-keyboard-coding-system nil) in your init le. There is a similarity between using a coding system translation for keyboard input, and using an input method: both dene sequences of keyboard input that translate into single characters. However, input methods are designed to be convenient for interactive use by humans, and the sequences that are translated are typically sequences of ASCII printing characters. Coding systems typically translate sequences of non-graphic characters.

19.14 Fontsets
A font typically denes shapes for a single alphabet or script. Therefore, displaying the entire range of scripts that Emacs supports requires a collection of many fonts. In Emacs, such a collection is called a fontset. A fontset is dened by a list of font specications, each assigned to handle a range of character codes, and may fall back on another fontset for characters that are not covered by the fonts it species. Each fontset has a name, like a font. However, while fonts are stored in the system and the available font names are dened by the system, fontsets are dened within Emacs itself. Once you have dened a fontset, you can use it within Emacs by specifying its name, anywhere that you could use a single font. Of course, Emacs fontsets can use only the fonts that the system supports. If some characters appear on the screen as empty boxes or hex codes, this means that the fontset in use for them has no font for those characters. In this case, or if the characters are shown, but not as well as you would like, you may need to install extra fonts. Your operating system may have optional fonts that you can install; or you can install the GNU Intlfonts package, which includes fonts for most supported scripts.2 Emacs creates three fontsets automatically: the standard fontset, the startup fontset and the default fontset. The default fontset is most likely to have fonts for a wide variety of non-ASCII characters, and is the default fallback for the other two fontsets, and if you set a default font rather than fontset. However, it does not specify font family names, so results can be somewhat random if you use it directly. You can specify use of a particular fontset by starting Emacs with the -fn option. For example, emacs -fn fontset-standard You can also specify a fontset with the Font resource (see Appendix D [X Resources], page 521). If no fontset is specied for use, then Emacs uses an ASCII font, with fontset-default as a fallback for characters the font does not cover. The standard fontset is only used if explicitly requested, despite its name.
2

If you run Emacs on X, you may need to inform the X server about the location of the newly installed fonts with commands such as: xset fp+ /usr/local/share/emacs/fonts xset fp rehash

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A fontset does not necessarily specify a font for every character code. If a fontset species no font for a certain character, or if it species a font that does not exist on your system, then it cannot display that character properly. It will display that character as a hex code or thin space or an empty box instead. (See Section 11.19 [glyphless characters], page 87, for details.)

19.15 Dening fontsets


When running on X, Emacs creates a standard fontset automatically according to the value of standard-fontset-spec. This fontsets name is -*-fixed-medium-r-normal-*-16-*-*-*-*-*-fontset-standard or just fontset-standard for short. On GNUstep and Mac OS X, the standard fontset is created using the value of ns-standard-fontset-spec, and on MS Windows it is created using the value of w32-standard-fontset-spec. Bold, italic, and bold-italic variants of the standard fontset are created automatically. Their names have bold instead of medium, or i instead of r, or both. Emacs generates a fontset automatically, based on any default ASCII font that you specify with the Font resource or the -fn argument, or the default font that Emacs found when it started. This is the startup fontset and its name is fontsetstartup. It does this by replacing the charset registry eld with fontset, and replacing charset encoding eld with startup, then using the resulting string to specify a fontset. For instance, if you start Emacs with a font of this form, emacs -fn "*courier-medium-r-normal--14-140-*-iso8859-1" Emacs generates the following fontset and uses it for the initial X window frame: -*-courier-medium-r-normal-*-14-140-*-*-*-*-fontset-startup The startup fontset will use the font that you specify, or a variant with a dierent registry and encoding, for all the characters that are supported by that font, and fallback on fontset-default for other characters. With the X resource Emacs.Font, you can specify a fontset name just like an actual font name. But be careful not to specify a fontset name in a wildcard resource like Emacs*Fontthat wildcard specication matches various other resources, such as for menus, and menus cannot handle fontsets. See Appendix D [X Resources], page 521. You can specify additional fontsets using X resources named Fontset-n , where n is an integer starting from 0. The resource value should have this form:
fontpattern, [charset :font ]. . .

fontpattern should have the form of a standard X font name (see the previous fontset-startup example), except for the last two elds. They should have the form fontset-alias . The fontset has two names, one long and one short. The long name is fontpattern. The short name is fontset-alias . You can refer to the fontset by either name.

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The construct charset :font species which font to use (in this fontset) for one particular character set. Here, charset is the name of a character set, and font is the font to use for that character set. You can use this construct any number of times in dening one fontset. For the other character sets, Emacs chooses a font based on fontpattern. It replaces fontset-alias with values that describe the character set. For the ASCII character font, fontset-alias is replaced with ISO8859-1. In addition, when several consecutive elds are wildcards, Emacs collapses them into a single wildcard. This is to prevent use of auto-scaled fonts. Fonts made by scaling larger fonts are not usable for editing, and scaling a smaller font is not also useful, because it is better to use the smaller font in its own size, which is what Emacs does. Thus if fontpattern is this, -*-fixed-medium-r-normal-*-24-*-*-*-*-*-fontset-24 the font specication for ASCII characters would be this: -*-fixed-medium-r-normal-*-24-*-ISO8859-1 and the font specication for Chinese GB2312 characters would be this: -*-fixed-medium-r-normal-*-24-*-gb2312*-* You may not have any Chinese font matching the above font specication. Most X distributions include only Chinese fonts that have song ti or fangsong ti in the family eld. In such a case, Fontset-n can be specied as:
Emacs.Fontset-0: -*-fixed-medium-r-normal-*-24-*-*-*-*-*-fontset-24,\ chinese-gb2312:-*-*-medium-r-normal-*-24-*-gb2312*-*

Then, the font specications for all but Chinese GB2312 characters have fixed in the family eld, and the font specication for Chinese GB2312 characters has a wild card * in the family eld. The function that processes the fontset resource value to create the fontset is called create-fontset-from-fontset-spec. You can also call this function explicitly to create a fontset. See Section 18.8 [Fonts], page 171, for more information about font naming.

19.16 Modifying Fontsets


Fontsets do not always have to be created from scratch. If only minor changes are required it may be easier to modify an existing fontset. Modifying fontset-default will also aect other fontsets that use it as a fallback, so can be an eective way of xing problems with the fonts that Emacs chooses for a particular script. Fontsets can be modied using the function set-fontset-font, specifying a character, a charset, a script, or a range of characters to modify the font for, and a font specication for the font to be used. Some examples are: ;; Use Liberation Mono for latin-3 charset. (set-fontset-font "fontset-default" iso-8859-3 "Liberation Mono") ;; Prefer a big5 font for han characters

Chapter 19: International Character Set Support (set-fontset-font "fontset-default" han (font-spec :registry "big5") nil prepend) ;; Use DejaVu Sans Mono as a fallback in fontset-startup ;; before resorting to fontset-default. (set-fontset-font "fontset-startup" nil "DejaVu Sans Mono" nil append) ;; Use MyPrivateFont for the Unicode private use area. (set-fontset-font "fontset-default" (#xe000 . #xf8ff) "MyPrivateFont")

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19.17 Undisplayable Characters


There may be some non-ASCII characters that your terminal cannot display. Most text terminals support just a single character set (use the variable defaultterminal-coding-system to tell Emacs which one, Section 19.13 [Terminal Coding], page 196); characters that cant be encoded in that coding system are displayed as ? by default. Graphical displays can display a broader range of characters, but you may not have fonts installed for all of them; characters that have no font appear as a hollow box. If you use Latin-1 characters but your terminal cant display Latin-1, you can arrange to display mnemonic ASCII sequences instead, e.g. "o for o-umlaut. Load the library iso-ascii to do this. If your terminal can display Latin-1, you can display characters from other European character sets using a mixture of equivalent Latin-1 characters and ASCII mnemonics. Customize the variable latin1-display to enable this. The mnemonic ASCII sequences mostly correspond to those of the prex input methods.

19.18 Unibyte Editing Mode


The ISO 8859 Latin-n character sets dene character codes in the range 0240 to 0377 octal (160 to 255 decimal) to handle the accented letters and punctuation needed by various European languages (and some non-European ones). Note that Emacs considers bytes with codes in this range as raw bytes, not as characters, even in a unibyte buer, i.e. if you disable multibyte characters. However, Emacs can still handle these character codes as if they belonged to one of the singlebyte character sets at a time. To specify which of these codes to use, invoke M-x set-language-environment and specify a suitable language environment such as Latin-n . For more information about unibyte operation, see Section 19.2 [Disabling Multibyte], page 182.

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Emacs can also display bytes in the range 160 to 255 as readable characters, provided the terminal or font in use supports them. This works automatically. On a graphical display, Emacs can also display single-byte characters through fontsets, in eect by displaying the equivalent multibyte characters according to the current language environment. To request this, set the variable unibyte-display-vialanguage-environment to a non-nil value. Note that setting this only aects how these bytes are displayed, but does not change the fundamental fact that Emacs treats them as raw bytes, not as characters. If your terminal does not support display of the Latin-1 character set, Emacs can display these characters as ASCII sequences which at least give you a clear idea of what the characters are. To do this, load the library iso-ascii. Similar libraries for other Latin-n character sets could be implemented, but have not been so far. Normally non-ISO-8859 characters (decimal codes between 128 and 159 inclusive) are displayed as octal escapes. You can change this for non-standard extended versions of ISO-8859 character sets by using the function standarddisplay-8bit in the disp-table library. There are two ways to input single-byte non-ASCII characters: You can use an input method for the selected language environment. See Section 19.4 [Input Methods], page 185. When you use an input method in a unibyte buer, the non-ASCII character you specify with it is converted to unibyte. If your keyboard can generate character codes 128 (decimal) and up, representing non-ASCII characters, you can type those character codes directly. On a graphical display, you should not need to do anything special to use these keys; they should simply work. On a text terminal, you should use the command M-x set-keyboard-coding-system or customize the variable keyboard-coding-system to specify which coding system your keyboard uses (see Section 19.13 [Terminal Coding], page 196). Enabling this feature will probably require you to use ESC to type Meta characters; however, on a console terminal or in xterm, you can arrange for Meta to be converted to ESC and still be able type 8-bit characters present directly on the keyboard or using Compose or AltGr keys. See Section 2.1 [User Input], page 11. For Latin-1 only, you can use the key C-x 8 as a compose character prex for entry of non-ASCII Latin-1 printing characters. C-x 8 is good for insertion (in the minibuer as well as other buers), for searching, and in any other context where a key sequence is allowed. C-x 8 works by loading the iso-transl library. Once that library is loaded, the ALT modier key, if the keyboard has one, serves the same purpose as C-x 8: use ALT together with an accent character to modify the following letter. In addition, if the keyboard has keys for the Latin-1 dead accent characters, they too are dened to compose with the following character, once iso-transl is loaded. Use C-x 8 C-h to list all the available C-x 8 translations.

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19.19 Charsets
In Emacs, charset is short for character set. Emacs supports most popular charsets (such as ascii, iso-8859-1, cp1250, big5, and unicode), in addition to some charsets of its own (such as emacs, unicode-bmp, and eight-bit). All supported characters belong to one or more charsets. Emacs normally does the right thing with respect to charsets, so that you dont have to worry about them. However, it is sometimes helpful to know some of the underlying details about charsets. One example is font selection (see Section 18.8 [Fonts], page 171). Each language environment (see Section 19.3 [Language Environments], page 183) denes a priority list for the various charsets. When searching for a font, Emacs initially attempts to nd one that can display the highest-priority charsets. For instance, in the Japanese language environment, the charset japanese-jisx0208 has the highest priority, so Emacs tries to use a font whose registry property is JISX0208.1983-0. There are two commands that can be used to obtain information about charsets. The command M-x list-charset-chars prompts for a charset name, and displays all the characters in that character set. The command M-x describe-character-set prompts for a charset name, and displays information about that charset, including its internal representation within Emacs. M-x list-character-sets displays a list of all supported charsets. The list gives the names of charsets and additional information to identity each charset; see the International Register of Coded Character Sets for more details. In this list, charsets are divided into two categories: normal charsets are listed rst, followed by supplementary charsets. A supplementary charset is one that is used to dene another charset (as a parent or a subset), or to provide backward-compatibility for older Emacs versions. To nd out which charset a character in the buer belongs to, put point before it and type C-u C-x = (see Section 19.1 [International Chars], page 180).

19.20 Bidirectional Editing


Emacs supports editing text written in scripts, such as Arabic and Hebrew, whose natural ordering of horizontal text for display is from right to left. However, digits and Latin text embedded in these scripts are still displayed left to right. It is also not uncommon to have small portions of text in Arabic or Hebrew embedded in an otherwise Latin document; e.g., as comments and strings in a program source le. For these reasons, text that uses these scripts is actually bidirectional : a mixture of runs of left-to-right and right-to-left characters. This section describes the facilities and options provided by Emacs for editing bidirectional text. Emacs stores right-to-left and bidirectional text in the so-called logical (or reading ) order: the buer or string position of the rst character you read precedes that of the next character. Reordering of bidirectional text into the visual order happens at display time. As result, character positions no longer increase monotonically with

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their positions on display. Emacs implements the Unicode Bidirectional Algorithm described in the Unicode Standard Annex #9, for reordering of bidirectional text for display. The buer-local variable bidi-display-reordering controls whether text in the buer is reordered for display. If its value is non-nil, Emacs reorders characters that have right-to-left directionality when they are displayed. The default value is t. Each paragraph of bidirectional text can have its own base direction, either rightto-left or left-to-right. (Paragraph boundaries are empty lines, i.e. lines consisting entirely of whitespace characters.) Text in left-to-right paragraphs begins on the screen at the left margin of the window and is truncated or continued when it reaches the right margin. By contrast, text in right-to-left paragraphs is displayed starting at the right margin and is continued or truncated at the left margin. Emacs determines the base direction of each paragraph dynamically, based on the text at the beginning of the paragraph. However, sometimes a buer may need to force a certain base direction for its paragraphs. The variable bidi-paragraphdirection, if non-nil, disables the dynamic determination of the base direction, and instead forces all paragraphs in the buer to have the direction specied by its buer-local value. The value can be either right-to-left or left-to-right. Any other value is interpreted as nil. Alternatively, you can control the base direction of a paragraph by inserting special formatting characters in front of the paragraph. The special character RIGHTTO-LEFT MARK, or rlm, forces the right-to-left direction on the following paragraph, while LEFT-TO-RIGHT MARK, or lrm forces the left-to-right direction. (You can use C-x 8 RET to insert these characters.) In a GUI session, the lrm and rlm characters display as very thin blank characters; on text terminals they display as blanks. Because characters are reordered for display, Emacs commands that operate in the logical order or on stretches of buer positions may produce unusual eects. For example, C-f and C-b commands move point in the logical order, so the cursor will sometimes jump when point traverses reordered bidirectional text. Similarly, a highlighted region covering a contiguous range of character positions may look discontinuous if the region spans reordered text. This is normal and similar to the behavior of other programs that support bidirectional text.

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20 Major and Minor Modes


Emacs contains many editing modes that alter its basic behavior in useful ways. These are divided into major modes and minor modes. Major modes provide specialized facilities for working on a particular le type, such as a C source le (see Chapter 23 [Programs], page 249), or a particular type of non-le buer, such as a shell buer (see Section 31.3 [Shell], page 401). Major modes are mutually exclusive; each buer has one and only one major mode at any time. Minor modes are optional features which you can turn on or o, not necessarily specic to a type of le or buer. For example, Auto Fill mode is a minor mode in which SPC breaks lines between words as you type (see Section 22.5.1 [Auto Fill], page 218). Minor modes are independent of one another, and of the selected major mode.

20.1 Major Modes


Every buer possesses a major mode, which determines the editing behavior of Emacs while that buer is current. The mode line normally shows the name of the current major mode, in parentheses (see Section 1.3 [Mode Line], page 8). The least specialized major mode is called Fundamental mode. This mode has no mode-specic redenitions or variable settings, so that each Emacs command behaves in its most general manner, and each user option variable is in its default state. For editing text of a specic type that Emacs knows about, such as Lisp code or English text, you typically use a more specialized major mode, such as Lisp mode or Text mode. Most major modes fall into three major groups. The rst group contains modes for normal text, either plain or with mark-up. It includes Text mode, HTML mode, SGML mode, TEX mode and Outline mode. The second group contains modes for specic programming languages. These include Lisp mode (which has several variants), C mode, Fortran mode, and others. The third group consists of major modes that are not associated directly with les; they are used in buers created for specic purposes by Emacs, such as Dired mode for buers made by Dired (see Chapter 27 [Dired], page 329), Message mode for buers made by C-x m (see Chapter 29 [Sending Mail], page 367), and Shell mode for buers used to communicate with an inferior shell process (see Section 31.3.2 [Interactive Shell], page 403). Usually, the major mode is automatically set by Emacs, when you rst visit a le or create a buer (see Section 20.3 [Choosing Modes], page 207). You can explicitly select a new major mode by using an M-x command. Take the name of the mode and add -mode to get the name of the command to select that mode (e.g., M-x lisp-mode enters Lisp mode). The value of the buer-local variable major-mode is a symbol with the same name as the major mode command (e.g. lisp-mode). This variable is set automatically; you should not change it yourself.

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The default value of major-mode determines the major mode to use for les that do not specify a major mode, and for new buers created with C-x b. Normally, this default value is the symbol fundamental-mode, which species Fundamental mode. You can change this default value via the Customization interface (see Section 33.1 [Easy Customization], page 434), or by adding a line like this to your init le (see Section 33.4 [Init File], page 461): (setq-default major-mode text-mode) If the default value of major-mode is nil, the major mode is taken from the previously current buer. Specialized major modes often change the meanings of certain keys to do something more suitable for the mode. For instance, programming language modes bind TAB to indent the current line according to the rules of the language (see Chapter 21 [Indentation], page 210). The keys that are commonly changed are TAB, DEL, and C-j. Many modes also dene special commands of their own, usually bound in the prex key C-c. Major modes can also alter user options and variables; for instance, programming language modes typically set a buer-local value for the variable comment-start, which determines how source code comments are delimited (see Section 23.5 [Comments], page 258). To view the documentation for the current major mode, including a list of its key bindings, type C-h m (describe-mode). Every major mode, apart from Fundamental mode, denes a mode hook, a customizable list of Lisp functions to run each time the mode is enabled in a buer. See Section 33.2.2 [Hooks], page 445, for more information about hooks. Each mode hook is named after its major mode, e.g. Fortran mode has fortran-mode-hook. Furthermore, all text-based major modes run text-mode-hook, and all programming language modes run prog-mode-hook, prior to running their own mode hooks. Hook functions can look at the value of the variable major-mode to see which mode is actually being entered. Mode hooks are commonly used to enable minor modes (see Section 20.2 [Minor Modes], page 205). For example, you can put the following lines in your init le to enable Flyspell minor mode in all text-based major modes (see Section 13.4 [Spelling], page 112), and Eldoc minor mode in Emacs Lisp mode (see Section 23.6.3 [Lisp Doc], page 263): (add-hook text-mode-hook flyspell-mode) (add-hook emacs-lisp-mode-hook eldoc-mode)

20.2 Minor Modes


A minor mode is an optional editing mode that alters the behavior of Emacs in some well-dened way. Unlike major modes, any number of minor modes can be in eect at any time. Some minor modes are buer-local, and can be turned on (enabled) in certain buers and o (disabled) in others. Other minor modes are global : while enabled, they aect everything you do in the Emacs session, in all buers. Most minor modes are disabled by default, but a few are enabled by default.

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Most buer-local minor modes say in the mode line when they are enabled, just after the major mode indicator. For example, Fill in the mode line means that Auto Fill mode is enabled. See Section 1.3 [Mode Line], page 8. Like major modes, each minor mode is associated with a mode command, whose name consists of the mode name followed by -mode. For instance, the mode command for Auto Fill mode is auto-fill-mode. But unlike a major mode command, which simply enables the mode, the mode command for a minor mode can either enable or disable it: If you invoke the mode command directly with no prex argument (either via M-x, or by binding it to a key and typing that key; see Section 33.3 [Key Bindings], page 452), that toggles the minor mode. The minor mode is turned on if it was o, and turned o if it was on. If you invoke the mode command with a prex argument, the minor mode is unconditionally turned o if that argument is zero or negative; otherwise, it is unconditionally turned on. If the mode command is called via Lisp, the minor mode is unconditionally turned on if the argument is omitted or nil. This makes it easy to turn on a minor mode from a major modes mode hook (see Section 20.1 [Major Modes], page 204). A non-nil argument is handled like an interactive prex argument, as described above. Most minor modes also have a mode variable, with the same name as the mode command. Its value is non-nil if the mode is enabled, and nil if it is disabled. In general, you should not try to enable or disable the mode by changing the value of the mode variable directly in Lisp; you should run the mode command instead. However, setting the mode variable through the Customize interface (see Section 33.1 [Easy Customization], page 434) will always properly enable or disable the mode, since Customize automatically runs the mode command for you. The following is a list of some buer-local minor modes: Abbrev mode automatically expands text based on pre-dened abbreviation denitions. See Chapter 26 [Abbrevs], page 322. Auto Fill mode inserts newlines as you type to prevent lines from becoming too long. See Section 22.5 [Filling], page 218. Auto Save mode saves the buer contents periodically to reduce the amount of work you can lose in case of a crash. See Section 15.5 [Auto Save], page 136. Enriched mode enables editing and saving of formatted text. See Section 22.13 [Enriched Text], page 237. Flyspell mode automatically highlights misspelled words. See Section 13.4 [Spelling], page 112. Font-Lock mode automatically highlights certain textual units found in programs. It is enabled globally by default, but you can disable it in individual buers. See Section 11.8 [Faces], page 75. Linum mode displays each lines line number in the windows left margin.

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Outline minor mode provides similar facilities to the major mode called Outline mode. See Section 22.8 [Outline Mode], page 224. Overwrite mode causes ordinary printing characters to replace existing text instead of shoving it to the right. For example, if point is in front of the B in FOOBAR, then in Overwrite mode typing a G changes it to FOOGAR, instead of producing FOOGBAR as usual. In Overwrite mode, the command C-q inserts the next character whatever it may be, even if it is a digitthis gives you a way to insert a character instead of replacing an existing character. The mode command, overwrite-mode, is bound to the INSERT key. Binary Overwrite mode is a variant of Overwrite mode for editing binary les; it treats newlines and tabs like other characters, so that they overwrite other characters and can be overwritten by them. In Binary Overwrite mode, digits after C-q specify an octal character code, as usual. Visual Line mode performs word wrapping, causing long lines to be wrapped at word boundaries. See Section 11.22 [Visual Line Mode], page 89. And here are some useful global minor modes: Column Number mode enables display of the current column number in the mode line. See Section 1.3 [Mode Line], page 8. Delete Selection mode causes text insertion to rst delete the text in the region, if the region is active. See Section 8.3 [Using Region], page 50. Icomplete mode displays an indication of available completions when you are in the minibuer and completion is active. See Section 5.3.5 [Completion Options], page 33. Line Number mode enables display of the current line number in the mode line. It is enabled by default. See Section 1.3 [Mode Line], page 8. Menu Bar mode gives each frame a menu bar. It is enabled by default. See Section 18.14 [Menu Bars], page 176. Scroll Bar mode gives each window a scroll bar. It is enabled by default, but the scroll bar is only displayed on graphical terminals. See Section 18.12 [Scroll Bars], page 176. Tool Bar mode gives each frame a tool bar. It is enabled by default, but the tool bar is only displayed on graphical terminals. See Section 18.15 [Tool Bars], page 177. Transient Mark mode highlights the region, and makes many Emacs commands operate on the region when the mark is active. It is enabled by default. See Chapter 8 [Mark], page 47.

20.3 Choosing File Modes


When you visit a le, Emacs chooses a major mode automatically. Normally, it makes the choice based on the le namefor example, les whose names end in .c are normally edited in C modebut sometimes it chooses the major mode based on special text in the le. This special text can also be used to enable buer-local minor modes.

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Here is the exact procedure: First, Emacs checks whether the le contains le-local mode variables. See Section 33.2.4 [File Variables], page 447. If there is a le-local variable that species a major mode, then Emacs uses that major mode, ignoring all other criteria. There are several methods to specify a major mode using a le-local variable; the simplest is to put the mode name in the rst nonblank line, preceded and followed by -*-. Other text may appear on the line as well. For example, ; -*-Lisp-*tells Emacs to use Lisp mode. Note how the semicolon is used to make Lisp treat this line as a comment. You could equivalently write ; -*- mode: Lisp;-*You can also use le-local variables to specify buer-local minor modes, by using eval specications. For example, this rst nonblank line puts the buer in Lisp mode and enables Auto-Fill mode: ; -*- mode: Lisp; eval: (auto-fill-mode 1); -*Note, however, that it is usually inappropriate to enable minor modes this way, since most minor modes represent individual user preferences. If you personally want to use a minor mode for a particular le type, it is better to enable the minor mode via a major mode hook (see Section 20.1 [Major Modes], page 204). Second, if there is no le variable specifying a major mode, Emacs checks whether the les contents begin with #!. If so, that indicates that the le can serve as an executable shell command, which works by running an interpreter named on the les rst line (the rest of the le is used as input to the interpreter). Therefore, Emacs tries to use the interpreter name to choose a mode. For instance, a le that begins with #!/usr/bin/perl is opened in Perl mode. The variable interpretermode-alist species the correspondence between interpreter program names and major modes. When the rst line starts with #!, you usually cannot use the -*- feature on the rst line, because the system would get confused when running the interpreter. So Emacs looks for -*- on the second line in such les as well as on the rst line. The same is true for man pages which start with the magic string \" to specify a list of tro preprocessors. Third, Emacs tries to determine the major mode by looking at the text at the start of the buer, based on the variable magic-mode-alist. By default, this variable is nil (an empty list), so Emacs skips this step; however, you can customize it in your init le (see Section 33.4 [Init File], page 461). The value should be a list of elements of the form (regexp . mode-function ) where regexp is a regular expression (see Section 12.5 [Regexps], page 97), and mode-function is a major mode command. If the text at the beginning of the le matches regexp, Emacs chooses the major mode specied by mode-function. Alternatively, an element of magic-mode-alist may have the form (match-function . mode-function )

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where match-function is a Lisp function that is called at the beginning of the buer; if the function returns non-nil, Emacs set the major mode with mode-function. Fourthif Emacs still hasnt found a suitable major modeit looks at the les name. The correspondence between le names and major modes is controlled by the variable auto-mode-alist. Its value is a list in which each element has this form, (regexp . mode-function ) or this form, (regexp mode-function flag ) For example, one element normally found in the list has the form ("\\.c\\" . c-mode), and it is responsible for selecting C mode for les whose names end in .c. (Note that \\ is needed in Lisp syntax to include a \ in the string, which must be used to suppress the special meaning of . in regexps.) If the element has the form (regexp mode-function flag ) and ag is non-nil, then after calling mode-function, Emacs discards the sux that matched regexp and searches the list again for another match. On GNU/Linux and other systems with case-sensitive le names, Emacs performs a case-sensitive search through auto-mode-alist; if this search fails, it performs a second case-insensitive search through the alist. To suppress the second search, change the variable auto-mode-case-fold to nil. On systems with caseinsensitive le names, such as Microsoft Windows, Emacs performs a single caseinsensitive search through auto-mode-alist. Finally, if Emacs still hasnt found a major mode to use, it compares the text at the start of the buer to the variable magic-fallback-mode-alist. This variable works like magic-mode-alist, described above, except that is consulted only after auto-mode-alist. By default, magic-fallback-mode-alist contains forms that check for image les, HTML/XML/SGML les, and PostScript les. If you have changed the major mode of a buer, you can return to the major mode Emacs would have chosen automatically, by typing M-x normal-mode. This is the same function that find-file calls to choose the major mode. It also processes the les -*- line or local variables list (if any). See Section 33.2.4 [File Variables], page 447. The commands C-x C-w and set-visited-file-name change to a new major mode if the new le name implies a mode (see Section 15.3 [Saving], page 128). (C-x C-s does this too, if the buer wasnt visiting a le.) However, this does not happen if the buer contents specify a major mode, and certain special major modes do not allow the mode to change. You can turn o this mode-changing feature by setting change-major-mode-with-file-name to nil.

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21 Indentation
Indentation refers to inserting or adjusting whitespace characters (space and/or tab characters) at the beginning of a line of text. This chapter documents indentation commands and options which are common to Text mode and related modes, as well as programming language modes. See Section 23.3 [Program Indent], page 252, for additional documentation about indenting in programming modes. The simplest way to perform indentation is the TAB key. In most major modes, this runs the command indent-for-tab-command. (In C and related modes, TAB runs the command c-indent-line-or-region, which behaves similarly). TAB Insert whitespace, or indent the current line, in a mode-appropriate way (indent-for-tab-command). If the region is active, indent all the lines within it.

The exact behavior of TAB depends on the major mode. In Text mode and related major modes, TAB normally inserts some combination of space and tab characters to advance point to the next tab stop (see Section 21.2 [Tab Stops], page 211). For this purpose, the position of the rst non-whitespace character on the preceding line is treated as an additional tab stop, so you can use TAB to align point with the preceding line. If the region is active (see Section 8.3 [Using Region], page 50), TAB acts specially: it indents each line in the region so that its rst non-whitespace character is aligned with the preceding line. In programming modes, TAB indents the current line of code in a way that makes sense given the code in the preceding lines. If the region is active, all the lines in the region are indented this way. If point was initially within the current lines indentation, it is repositioned to the rst non-whitespace character on the line. If you just want to insert a tab character in the buer, type C-q TAB (see Section 4.1 [Inserting Text], page 17).

21.1 Indentation Commands


Apart from the TAB (indent-for-tab-command) command, Emacs provides a variety of commands to perform indentation in other ways. C-j C-M-o Perform RET followed by TAB (newline-and-indent). Split the current line at point (split-line). The text on the line after point becomes a new line, indented to the same column where point is located. This command rst moves point forward over any spaces and tabs. Afterward, point is positioned before the inserted newline. Move (forward or back) to the rst non-whitespace character on the current line (back-to-indentation). If there are no non-whitespace characters on the line, move to the end of the line. Indent whitespace at point, up to the next tab stop (tab-to-tabstop). See Section 21.2 [Tab Stops], page 211.

M-m

M-i

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M-x indent-relative Insert whitespace at point, until point is aligned with the rst nonwhitespace character on the previous line (actually, the last non-blank line). If point is already farther right than that, run tab-to-tabstop insteadunless called with a numeric argument, in which case do nothing. M-^ Merge the previous and the current line (delete-indentation). This joins the two lines cleanly, by replacing any indentation at the front of the current line, together with the line boundary, with a single space. As a special case (useful for Lisp code), the single space is omitted if the characters to be joined are consecutive opening and closing parentheses, or if the junction follows another newline. If there is a ll prex, M-^ deletes the ll prex if it appears after the newline that is deleted. See Section 22.5.3 [Fill Prex], page 220. Indent all the lines in the region, as though you had typed TAB at the beginning of each line (indent-region). If a numeric argument is supplied, indent every line in the region to that column number. Shift each line in the region by a xed distance, to the right or left (indent-rigidly). The distance to move is determined by the numeric argument (positive to move rightward, negative to move leftward). This command can be used to remove all indentation from the lines in the region, by invoking it with a large negative argument, e.g. C-u -1000 C-x TAB.

C-M-\

C-x TAB

21.2 Tab Stops


Emacs denes certain column numbers to be tab stops. These are used as stopping points by TAB when inserting whitespace in Text mode and related modes (see Chapter 21 [Indentation], page 210), and by commands like M-i (see Section 21.1 [Indentation Commands], page 210). By default, tab stops are located every 8 columns. These positions are stored in the variable tab-stop-list, whose value is a list of column numbers in increasing order. Instead of customizing the variable tab-stop-list directly, a convenient way to view and set tab stops is via the command M-x edit-tab-stops. This switches to a buer containing a description of the tab stop settings, which looks like this: : : : : : : 0 1 2 3 4 0123456789012345678901234567890123456789012345678 To install changes, type C-c C-c The rst line contains a colon at each tab stop. The numbers on the next two lines are present just to indicate where the colons are.

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You can edit this buer to specify dierent tab stops by placing colons on the desired columns. The buer uses Overwrite mode (see Section 20.2 [Minor Modes], page 205). When you are done, type C-c C-c to make the new tab stops take eect. Normally, the new tab stop settings apply to all buers. However, if you have made the tab-stop-list variable local to the buer where you called M-x edit-tab-stops (see Section 33.2.3 [Locals], page 446), then the new tab stop settings apply only to that buer. To save the tab stop settings for future Emacs sessions, use the Customize interface to save the value of tab-stop-list (see Section 33.1 [Easy Customization], page 434). Note that the tab stops discussed in this section have nothing to do with how tab characters are displayed in the buer. Tab characters are always displayed as empty spaces extending to the next display tab stop. See Section 11.19 [Text Display], page 87.

21.3 Tabs vs. Spaces


Normally, indentation commands insert (or remove) an optimal mix of space characters and tab characters to align to the desired column. Tab characters are displayed as a stretch of empty space extending to the next display tab stop. By default, there is one display tab stop every tab-width columns (the default is 8). See Section 11.19 [Text Display], page 87. If you prefer, all indentation can be made from spaces only. To request this, set the buer-local variable indent-tabs-mode to nil. See Section 33.2.3 [Locals], page 446, for information about setting buer-local variables. Note, however, that C-q TAB always inserts a tab character, regardless of the value of indent-tabsmode. One reason to set indent-tabs-mode to nil is that not all editors display tab characters in the same way. Emacs users, too, may have dierent customized values of tab-width. By using spaces only, you can make sure that your le always looks the same. If you only care about how it looks within Emacs, another way to tackle this problem is to set the tab-width variable in a le-local variable (see Section 33.2.4 [File Variables], page 447). There are also commands to convert tabs to spaces or vice versa, always preserving the columns of all non-whitespace text. M-x tabify scans the region for sequences of spaces, and converts sequences of at least two spaces to tabs if that can be done without changing indentation. M-x untabify changes all tabs in the region to appropriate numbers of spaces.

21.4 Convenience Features for Indentation


The variable tab-always-indent tweaks the behavior of the TAB (indent-fortab-command) command. The default value, t, gives the behavior described in Chapter 21 [Indentation], page 210. If you change the value to the symbol complete, then TAB rst tries to indent the current line, and if the line was already indented, it tries to complete the text at point (see Section 23.8 [Symbol Completion], page 264).

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If the value is nil, then TAB indents the current line only if point is at the left margin or in the lines indentation; otherwise, it inserts a tab character. Electric Indent mode is a global minor mode that automatically indents the line after every RET you type. To toggle this minor mode, type M-x electric-indent-mode.

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22 Commands for Human Languages


This chapter describes Emacs commands that act on text, by which we mean sequences of characters in a human language (as opposed to, say, a computer programming language). These commands act in ways that take into account the syntactic and stylistic conventions of human languages: conventions involving words, sentences, paragraphs, and capital letters. There are also commands for lling, which means rearranging the lines of a paragraph to be approximately equal in length. These commands, while intended primarily for editing text, are also often useful for editing programs. Emacs has several major modes for editing human-language text. If the le contains ordinary text, use Text mode, which customizes Emacs in small ways for the syntactic conventions of text. Outline mode provides special commands for operating on text with an outline structure. Org mode extends Outline mode and turn Emacs into a full-edged organizer: you can manage TODO lists, store notes and publish them in many formats. See Section 22.8 [Outline Mode], page 224. Emacs has other major modes for text which contains embedded commands, such as TEX and LaTEX (see Section 22.10 [TeX Mode], page 231); HTML and SGML (see Section 22.11 [HTML Mode], page 236); XML (see the nXML mode Info manual, which is distributed with Emacs); and Gro and Nro (see Section 22.12 [Nro Mode], page 237). If you need to edit pictures made out of text characters (commonly referred to as ASCII art), use Picture mode, a special major mode for editing such pictures. See Section Picture Mode in Specialized Emacs Features .

22.1 Words
Emacs denes several commands for moving over or operating on words: M-f M-b M-d M-DEL M-@ M-t Move forward over a word (forward-word). Move backward over a word (backward-word). Kill up to the end of a word (kill-word). Kill back to the beginning of a word (backward-kill-word). Mark the end of the next word (mark-word). Transpose two words or drag a word across others (transpose-words).

Notice how these keys form a series that parallels the character-based C-f, C-b, C-d, DEL and C-t. M-@ is cognate to C-@, which is an alias for C-SPC. The commands M-f (forward-word) and M-b (backward-word) move forward and backward over words. These META-based key sequences are analogous to the key sequences C-f and C-b, which move over single characters. The analogy extends to numeric arguments, which serve as repeat counts. M-f with a negative argument moves backward, and M-b with a negative argument moves forward. Forward motion

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stops right after the last letter of the word, while backward motion stops right before the rst letter. M-d (kill-word) kills the word after point. To be precise, it kills everything from point to the place M-f would move to. Thus, if point is in the middle of a word, M-d kills just the part after point. If some punctuation comes between point and the next word, it is killed along with the word. (If you wish to kill only the next word but not the punctuation before it, simply do M-f to get the end, and kill the word backwards with M-DEL.) M-d takes arguments just like M-f. M-DEL (backward-kill-word) kills the word before point. It kills everything from point back to where M-b would move to. For instance, if point is after the space in FOO, BAR, it kills FOO, . If you wish to kill just FOO, and not the comma and the space, use M-b M-d instead of M-DEL. M-t (transpose-words) exchanges the word before or containing point with the following word. The delimiter characters between the words do not move. For example, FOO, BAR transposes into BAR, FOO rather than BAR FOO,. See Section 13.2 [Transpose], page 111, for more on transposition. To operate on words with an operation which acts on the region, use the command M-@ (mark-word). This command sets the mark where M-f would move to. See Section 8.2 [Marking Objects], page 49, for more information about this command. The word commands understanding of word boundaries is controlled by the syntax table. Any character can, for example, be declared to be a word delimiter. See Section Syntax Tables in The Emacs Lisp Reference Manual . In addition, see Section 4.9 [Position Info], page 23 for the M-= (count-wordsregion) and M-x count-words commands, which count and report the number of words in the region or buer.

22.2 Sentences
The Emacs commands for manipulating sentences and paragraphs are mostly on Meta keys, like the word-handling commands. M-a M-e M-k C-x DEL Move back to the beginning of the sentence (backward-sentence). Move forward to the end of the sentence (forward-sentence). Kill forward to the end of the sentence (kill-sentence). Kill back to the beginning of the sentence (backward-killsentence).

The commands M-a (backward-sentence) and M-e (forward-sentence) move to the beginning and end of the current sentence, respectively. Their bindings were chosen to resemble C-a and C-e, which move to the beginning and end of a line. Unlike them, M-a and M-e move over successive sentences if repeated. Moving backward over a sentence places point just before the rst character of the sentence; moving forward places point right after the punctuation that ends the sentence. Neither one moves over the whitespace at the sentence boundary.

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Just as C-a and C-e have a kill command, C-k, to go with them, M-a and M-e have a corresponding kill command: M-k (kill-sentence) kills from point to the end of the sentence. With a positive numeric argument n, it kills the next n sentences; with a negative argument n, it kills back to the beginning of the nth preceding sentence. The C-x DEL (backward-kill-sentence) kills back to the beginning of a sentence. The sentence commands assume that you follow the American typists convention of putting two spaces at the end of a sentence. That is, a sentence ends wherever there is a ., ? or ! followed by the end of a line or two spaces, with any number of ), ], , or " characters allowed in between. A sentence also begins or ends wherever a paragraph begins or ends. It is useful to follow this convention, because it allows the Emacs sentence commands to distinguish between periods that end a sentence and periods that indicate abbreviations. If you want to use just one space between sentences, you can set the variable sentence-end-double-space to nil to make the sentence commands stop for single spaces. However, this has a drawback: there is no way to distinguish between periods that end sentences and those that indicate abbreviations. For convenient and reliable editing, we therefore recommend you follow the two-space convention. The variable sentence-end-double-space also aects lling (see Section 22.5.2 [Fill Commands], page 219). The variable sentence-end controls how to recognize the end of a sentence. If non-nil, its value should be a regular expression, which is used to match the last few characters of a sentence, together with the whitespace following the sentence (see Section 12.5 [Regexps], page 97). If the value is nil, the default, then Emacs computes sentence ends according to various criteria such as the value of sentenceend-double-space. Some languages, such as Thai, do not use periods to indicate the end of a sentence. Set the variable sentence-end-without-period to t in such cases.

22.3 Paragraphs
The Emacs commands for manipulating paragraphs are also on Meta keys. M-{ M-} M-h Move back to previous paragraph beginning (backward-paragraph). Move forward to next paragraph end (forward-paragraph). Put point and mark around this or next paragraph (mark-paragraph).

M-{ (backward-paragraph) moves to the beginning of the current or previous paragraph (see below for the denition of a paragraph). M-} (forward-paragraph) moves to the end of the current or next paragraph. If there is a blank line before the paragraph, M-{ moves to the blank line. When you wish to operate on a paragraph, type M-h (mark-paragraph) to set the region around it. For example, M-h C-w kills the paragraph around or after point. M-h puts point at the beginning and mark at the end of the paragraph point was in. If point is between paragraphs (in a run of blank lines, or at a boundary),

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M-h sets the region around the paragraph following point. If there are blank lines preceding the rst line of the paragraph, one of these blank lines is included in the region. If the region is already active, the command sets the mark without changing point, and each subsequent M-h further advances the mark by one paragraph. The denition of a paragraph depends on the major mode. In Fundamental mode, as well as Text mode and related modes, a paragraph is separated each neighboring paragraph another by one or more blank lineslines that are either empty, or consist solely of space, tab and/or formfeed characters. In programming language modes, paragraphs are usually dened in a similar way, so that you can use the paragraph commands even though there are no paragraphs as such in a program. Note that an indented line is not itself a paragraph break in Text mode. If you want indented lines to separate paragraphs, use Paragraph-Indent Text mode instead. See Section 22.7 [Text Mode], page 223. If you set a ll prex, then paragraphs are delimited by all lines which dont start with the ll prex. See Section 22.5 [Filling], page 218. The precise denition of a paragraph boundary is controlled by the variables paragraph-separate and paragraph-start. The value of paragraph-start is a regular expression that should match lines that either start or separate paragraphs (see Section 12.5 [Regexps], page 97). The value of paragraph-separate is another regular expression that should match lines that separate paragraphs without being part of any paragraph (for example, blank lines). Lines that start a new paragraph and are contained in it must match only paragraph-start, not paragraph-separate. For example, in Fundamental mode, paragraph-start is "\f\\|[ \t]*$", and paragraph-separate is "[ \t\f]*$".

22.4 Pages
Within some text les, text is divided into pages delimited by the formfeed character (ASCII code 12, also denoted as CONTROL-L), which is displayed in Emacs as the escape sequence ^L (see Section 11.19 [Text Display], page 87). Traditionally, when such text les are printed to hardcopy, each formfeed character forces a page break. Most Emacs commands treat it just like any other character, so you can insert it with C-q C-l, delete it with DEL, etc. In addition, Emacs provides commands to move over pages and operate on them. M-x what-page Display the page number of point, and the line number within that page. C-x [ C-x ] C-x C-p C-x l Move point to previous page boundary (backward-page). Move point to next page boundary (forward-page). Put point and mark around this page (or another page) (mark-page). Count the lines in this page (count-lines-page).

M-x what-page counts pages from the beginning of the le, and counts lines within the page, showing both numbers in the echo area.

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The C-x [ (backward-page) command moves point to immediately after the previous page delimiter. If point is already right after a page delimiter, it skips that one and stops at the previous one. A numeric argument serves as a repeat count. The C-x ] (forward-page) command moves forward past the next page delimiter. The C-x C-p command (mark-page) puts point at the beginning of the current page (after that page delimiter at the front), and the mark at the end of the page (after the page delimiter at the end). C-x C-p C-w is a handy way to kill a page to move it elsewhere. If you move to another page delimiter with C-x [ and C-x ], then yank the killed page, all the pages will be properly delimited once again. The reason C-x C-p includes only the following page delimiter in the region is to ensure that. A numeric argument to C-x C-p species which page to go to, relative to the current one. Zero means the current page, one the next page, and 1 the previous one. The C-x l command (count-lines-page) is good for deciding where to break a page in two. It displays in the echo area the total number of lines in the current page, and then divides it up into those preceding the current line and those following, as in Page has 96 (72+25) lines Notice that the sum is o by one; this is correct if point is not at the beginning of a line. The variable page-delimiter controls where pages begin. Its value is a regular expression that matches the beginning of a line that separates pages (see Section 12.5 [Regexps], page 97). The normal value of this variable is "^\f", which matches a formfeed character at the beginning of a line.

22.5 Filling Text


Filling text means breaking it up into lines that t a specied width. Emacs does lling in two ways. In Auto Fill mode, inserting text with self-inserting characters also automatically lls it. There are also explicit ll commands that you can use when editing text. 22.5.1 Auto Fill Mode Auto Fill mode is a buer-local minor mode (see Section 20.2 [Minor Modes], page 205) in which lines are broken automatically when they become too wide. Breaking happens only when you type a SPC or RET. M-x auto-fill-mode Enable or disable Auto Fill mode. SPC RET In Auto Fill mode, break lines when appropriate.

The mode command M-x auto-fill-mode toggles Auto Fill mode in the current buer. With a positive numeric argument, it enables Auto Fill mode, and with a negative argument it disables it. If auto-fill-mode is called from Lisp with an

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omitted or nil argument, it enables Auto Fill mode. To enable Auto Fill mode automatically in certain major modes, add auto-fill-mode to the mode hooks (see Section 20.1 [Major Modes], page 204). When Auto Fill mode is enabled, the mode indicator Fill appears in the mode line (see Section 1.3 [Mode Line], page 8). Auto Fill mode breaks lines automatically at spaces whenever they get longer than the desired width. This line breaking occurs only when you type SPC or RET. If you wish to insert a space or newline without permitting line-breaking, type C-q SPC or C-q C-j respectively. Also, C-o inserts a newline without line breaking. When Auto Fill mode breaks a line, it tries to obey the adaptive ll prex : if a ll prex can be deduced from the rst and/or second line of the current paragraph, it is inserted into the new line (see Section 22.5.4 [Adaptive Fill], page 222). Otherwise the new line is indented, as though you had typed TAB on it (see Chapter 21 [Indentation], page 210). In a programming language mode, if a line is broken in the middle of a comment, the comment is split by inserting new comment delimiters as appropriate. Auto Fill mode does not rell entire paragraphs; it breaks lines but does not merge lines. Therefore, editing in the middle of a paragraph can result in a paragraph that is not correctly lled. To ll it, call the explicit ll commands described in the next section. 22.5.2 Explicit Fill Commands M-q C-x f Fill current paragraph (fill-paragraph). Set the ll column (set-fill-column).

M-x fill-region Fill each paragraph in the region (fill-region). M-x fill-region-as-paragraph Fill the region, considering it as one paragraph. M-o M-s Center a line.

The command M-q (fill-paragraph) lls the current paragraph. It redistributes the line breaks within the paragraph, and deletes any excess space and tab characters occurring within the paragraph, in such a way that the lines end up tting within a certain maximum width. Normally, M-q acts on the paragraph where point is, but if point is between paragraphs, it acts on the paragraph after point. If the region is active, it acts instead on the text in the region. You can also call M-x fill-region to specically ll the text in the region. M-q and fill-region use the usual Emacs criteria for nding paragraph boundaries (see Section 22.3 [Paragraphs], page 216). For more control, you can use M-x fill-region-as-paragraph, which rells everything between point and mark as a single paragraph. This command deletes any blank lines within the region, so separate blocks of text end up combined into one block.

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A numeric argument to M-q tells it to justify the text as well as lling it. This means that extra spaces are inserted to make the right margin line up exactly at the ll column. To remove the extra spaces, use M-q with no argument. (Likewise for fill-region.) The maximum line width for lling is specied by the buer-local variable fillcolumn. The default value (see Section 33.2.3 [Locals], page 446) is 70. The easiest way to set fill-column in the current buer is to use the command C-x f (setfill-column). With a numeric argument, it uses that as the new ll column. With just C-u as argument, it sets fill-column to the current horizontal position of point. The command M-o M-s (center-line) centers the current line within the current ll column. With an argument n, it centers n lines individually and moves past them. This binding is made by Text mode and is available only in that and related modes (see Section 22.7 [Text Mode], page 223). By default, Emacs considers a period followed by two spaces or by a newline as the end of a sentence; a period followed by just one space indicates an abbreviation, not the end of a sentence. Accordingly, the ll commands will not break a line after a period followed by just one space. If you set the variable sentence-enddouble-space to nil, the ll commands will break a line after a period followed by one space, and put just one space after each period. See Section 22.2 [Sentences], page 215, for other eects and possible drawbacks of this. If the variable colon-double-space is non-nil, the ll commands put two spaces after a colon. To specify additional conditions where line-breaking is not allowed, customize the abnormal hook variable fill-nobreak-predicate (see Section 33.2.2 [Hooks], page 445). Each function in this hook is called with no arguments, with point positioned where Emacs is considering breaking a line. If a function returns a nonnil value, Emacs will not break the line there. Two functions you can use are fill-single-word-nobreak-p (dont break after the rst word of a sentence or before the last) and fill-french-nobreak-p (dont break after ( or before ), : or ?). 22.5.3 The Fill Prex The ll prex feature allows paragraphs to be lled so that each line starts with a special string of characters (such as a sequence of spaces, giving an indented paragraph). You can specify a ll prex explicitly; otherwise, Emacs tries to deduce one automatically (see Section 22.5.4 [Adaptive Fill], page 222). C-x . M-q Set the ll prex (set-fill-prefix). Fill a paragraph using current ll prex (fill-paragraph).

M-x fill-individual-paragraphs Fill the region, considering each change of indentation as starting a new paragraph.

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M-x fill-nonuniform-paragraphs Fill the region, considering only paragraph-separator lines as starting a new paragraph. To specify a ll prex for the current buer, move to a line that starts with the desired prex, put point at the end of the prex, and type C-x . (set-fillprefix). (Thats a period after the C-x.) To turn o the ll prex, specify an empty prex: type C-x . with point at the beginning of a line. When a ll prex is in eect, the ll commands remove the ll prex from each line of the paragraph before lling, and insert it on each line after lling. (The beginning of the rst line of the paragraph is left unchanged, since often that is intentionally dierent.) Auto Fill mode also inserts the ll prex automatically when it makes a new line (see Section 22.5.1 [Auto Fill], page 218). The C-o command inserts the ll prex on new lines it creates, when you use it at the beginning of a line (see Section 4.7 [Blank Lines], page 22). Conversely, the command M-^ deletes the prex (if it occurs) after the newline that it deletes (see Chapter 21 [Indentation], page 210). For example, if fill-column is 40 and you set the ll prex to ;; , then M-q in the following text ;; This is an ;; example of a paragraph ;; inside a Lisp-style comment. produces this: ;; This is an example of a paragraph ;; inside a Lisp-style comment. Lines that do not start with the ll prex are considered to start paragraphs, both in M-q and the paragraph commands; this gives good results for paragraphs with hanging indentation (every line indented except the rst one). Lines which are blank or indented once the prex is removed also separate or start paragraphs; this is what you want if you are writing multi-paragraph comments with a comment delimiter on each line. You can use M-x fill-individual-paragraphs to set the ll prex for each paragraph automatically. This command divides the region into paragraphs, treating every change in the amount of indentation as the start of a new paragraph, and lls each of these paragraphs. Thus, all the lines in one paragraph have the same amount of indentation. That indentation serves as the ll prex for that paragraph. M-x fill-nonuniform-paragraphs is a similar command that divides the region into paragraphs in a dierent way. It considers only paragraph-separating lines (as dened by paragraph-separate) as starting a new paragraph. Since this means that the lines of one paragraph may have dierent amounts of indentation, the ll prex used is the smallest amount of indentation of any of the lines of the paragraph. This gives good results with styles that indent a paragraphs rst line more or less that the rest of the paragraph. The ll prex is stored in the variable fill-prefix. Its value is a string, or nil when there is no ll prex. This is a per-buer variable; altering the variable

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aects only the current buer, but there is a default value which you can change as well. See Section 33.2.3 [Locals], page 446. The indentation text property provides another way to control the amount of indentation paragraphs receive. See Section 22.13.5 [Enriched Indentation], page 240. 22.5.4 Adaptive Filling The ll commands can deduce the proper ll prex for a paragraph automatically in certain cases: either whitespace or certain punctuation characters at the beginning of a line are propagated to all lines of the paragraph. If the paragraph has two or more lines, the ll prex is taken from the paragraphs second line, but only if it appears on the rst line as well. If a paragraph has just one line, ll commands may take a prex from that line. The decision is complicated because there are three reasonable things to do in such a case: Use the rst lines prex on all the lines of the paragraph. Indent subsequent lines with whitespace, so that they line up under the text that follows the prex on the rst line, but dont actually copy the prex from the rst line. Dont do anything special with the second and following lines. All three of these styles of formatting are commonly used. So the ll commands try to determine what you would like, based on the prex that appears and on the major mode. Here is how. If the prex found on the rst line matches adaptive-fill-first-lineregexp, or if it appears to be a comment-starting sequence (this depends on the major mode), then the prex found is used for lling the paragraph, provided it would not act as a paragraph starter on subsequent lines. Otherwise, the prex found is converted to an equivalent number of spaces, and those spaces are used as the ll prex for the rest of the lines, provided they would not act as a paragraph starter on subsequent lines. In Text mode, and other modes where only blank lines and page delimiters separate paragraphs, the prex chosen by adaptive lling never acts as a paragraph starter, so it can always be used for lling. The variable adaptive-fill-regexp determines what kinds of line beginnings can serve as a ll prex: any characters at the start of the line that match this regular expression are used. If you set the variable adaptive-fill-mode to nil, the ll prex is never chosen automatically. You can specify more complex ways of choosing a ll prex automatically by setting the variable adaptive-fill-function to a function. This function is called with point after the left margin of a line, and it should return the appropriate ll prex based on that line. If it returns nil, adaptive-fill-regexp gets a chance to nd a prex.

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22.6 Case Conversion Commands


Emacs has commands for converting either a single word or any arbitrary range of text to upper case or to lower case. M-l M-u M-c C-x C-l C-x C-u Convert following word to lower case (downcase-word). Convert following word to upper case (upcase-word). Capitalize the following word (capitalize-word). Convert region to lower case (downcase-region). Convert region to upper case (upcase-region).

M-l (downcase-word) converts the word after point to lower case, moving past it. Thus, repeating M-l converts successive words. M-u (upcase-word) converts to all capitals instead, while M-c (capitalize-word) puts the rst letter of the word into upper case and the rest into lower case. All these commands convert several words at once if given an argument. They are especially convenient for converting a large amount of text from all upper case to mixed case, because you can move through the text using M-l, M-u or M-c on each word as appropriate, occasionally using M-f instead to skip a word. When given a negative argument, the word case conversion commands apply to the appropriate number of words before point, but do not move point. This is convenient when you have just typed a word in the wrong case: you can give the case conversion command and continue typing. If a word case conversion command is given in the middle of a word, it applies only to the part of the word which follows point. (This is comparable to what M-d (kill-word) does.) With a negative argument, case conversion applies only to the part of the word before point. The other case conversion commands are C-x C-u (upcase-region) and C-x C-l (downcase-region), which convert everything between point and mark to the specied case. Point and mark do not move. The region case conversion commands upcase-region and downcase-region are normally disabled. This means that they ask for conrmation if you try to use them. When you conrm, you may enable the command, which means it will not ask for conrmation again. See Section 33.3.11 [Disabling], page 460.

22.7 Text Mode


Text mode is a major mode for editing les of text in a human language. Files which have names ending in the extension .txt are usually opened in Text mode (see Section 20.3 [Choosing Modes], page 207). To explicitly switch to Text mode, type M-x text-mode. In Text mode, only blank lines and page delimiters separate paragraphs. As a result, paragraphs can be indented, and adaptive lling determines what indentation to use when lling a paragraph. See Section 22.5.4 [Adaptive Fill], page 222.

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In Text mode, the TAB (indent-for-tab-command) command usually inserts whitespace up to the next tab stop, instead of indenting the current line. See Chapter 21 [Indentation], page 210, for details. Text mode turns o the features concerned with comments except when you explicitly invoke them. It changes the syntax table so that single-quotes are considered part of words (e.g. dont is considered one word). However, if a word starts with a single-quote, it is treated as a prex for the purposes of capitalization (e.g. M-c converts hello into Hello, as expected). If you indent the rst lines of paragraphs, then you should use Paragraph-Indent Text mode (M-x paragraph-indent-text-mode) rather than Text mode. In that mode, you do not need to have blank lines between paragraphs, because the rstline indentation is sucient to start a paragraph; however paragraphs in which every line is indented are not supported. Use M-x paragraph-indent-minor-mode to enable an equivalent minor mode for situations where you shouldnt change the major modein mail composition, for instance. Text mode binds M-TAB to ispell-complete-word. This command performs completion of the partial word in the buer before point, using the spelling dictionary as the space of possible words. See Section 13.4 [Spelling], page 112. If your window manager denes M-TAB to switch windows, you can type ESC TAB or C-M-i instead. Entering Text mode runs the mode hook text-mode-hook (see Section 20.1 [Major Modes], page 204). The following sections describe several major modes that are derived from Text mode. These derivatives share most of the features of Text mode described above. In particular, derivatives of Text mode run text-mode-hook prior to running their own mode hooks.

22.8 Outline Mode


Outline mode is a major mode derived from Text mode, which is specialized for editing outlines. It provides commands to navigate between entries in the outline structure, and commands to make parts of a buer temporarily invisible, so that the outline structure may be more easily viewed. Type M-x outline-mode to switch to Outline mode. Entering Outline mode runs the hook text-mode-hook followed by the hook outline-mode-hook (see Section 33.2.2 [Hooks], page 445). When you use an Outline mode command to make a line invisible (see Section 22.8.3 [Outline Visibility], page 226), the line disappears from the screen. An ellipsis (three periods in a row) is displayed at the end of the previous visible line, to indicate the hidden text. Multiple consecutive invisible lines produce just one ellipsis. Editing commands that operate on lines, such as C-n and C-p, treat the text of the invisible line as part of the previous visible line. Killing the ellipsis at the end of a visible line really kills all the following invisible text associated with the ellipsis. Outline minor mode is a buer-local minor mode which provides the same commands as the major mode, Outline mode, but can be used in conjunction with

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other major modes. You can type M-x outline-minor-mode to toggle Outline minor mode in the current buer, or use a le-local variable setting to enable it in a specic le (see Section 33.2.4 [File Variables], page 447). The major mode, Outline mode, provides special key bindings on the C-c prex. Outline minor mode provides similar bindings with C-c @ as the prex; this is to reduce the conicts with the major modes special commands. (The variable outline-minor-mode-prefix controls the prex used.) 22.8.1 Format of Outlines Outline mode assumes that the lines in the buer are of two types: heading lines and body lines. A heading line represents a topic in the outline. Heading lines start with one or more asterisk (*) characters; the number of asterisks determines the depth of the heading in the outline structure. Thus, a heading line with one * is a major topic; all the heading lines with two *s between it and the next one-* heading are its subtopics; and so on. Any line that is not a heading line is a body line. Body lines belong with the preceding heading line. Here is an example: * Food This is the body, which says something about the topic of food. ** Delicious Food This is the body of the second-level header. ** Distasteful Food This could have a body too, with several lines. *** Dormitory Food * Shelter Another first-level topic with its header line. A heading line together with all following body lines is called collectively an entry. A heading line together with all following deeper heading lines and their body lines is called a subtree. You can customize the criterion for distinguishing heading lines by setting the variable outline-regexp. (The recommended ways to do this are in a major mode function or with a le local variable.) Any line whose beginning has a match for this regexp is considered a heading line. Matches that start within a line (not at the left margin) do not count. The length of the matching text determines the level of the heading; longer matches make a more deeply nested level. Thus, for example, if a text formatter has commands @chapter, @section and @subsection to divide the document into chapters and sections, you could make those lines count as heading lines by setting outline-regexp to "@chap\\|@\\(sub\\)*section". Note the trick: the

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two words chapter and section are equally long, but by dening the regexp to match only chap we ensure that the length of the text matched on a chapter heading is shorter, so that Outline mode will know that sections are contained in chapters. This works as long as no other command starts with @chap. You can explicitly specify a rule for calculating the level of a heading line by setting the variable outline-level. The value of outline-level should be a function that takes no arguments and returns the level of the current heading. The recommended ways to set this variable are in a major mode command or with a le local variable. 22.8.2 Outline Motion Commands Outline mode provides special motion commands that move backward and forward to heading lines. C-c C-n C-c C-p C-c C-f C-c C-b C-c C-u Move point to the next visible heading line (outline-next-visibleheading). Move point to the previous visible heading line (outline-previousvisible-heading). Move point to the next visible heading line at the same level as the one point is on (outline-forward-same-level). Move point to the previous visible heading line at the same level (outline-backward-same-level). Move point up to a lower-level (more inclusive) visible heading line (outline-up-heading).

C-c C-n (outline-next-visible-heading) moves down to the next heading line. C-c C-p (outline-previous-visible-heading) moves similarly backward. Both accept numeric arguments as repeat counts. C-c C-f (outline-forward-same-level) and C-c C-b (outline-backwardsame-level) move from one heading line to another visible heading at the same depth in the outline. C-c C-u (outline-up-heading) moves backward to another heading that is less deeply nested. 22.8.3 Outline Visibility Commands Outline mode provides several commands for temporarily hiding or revealing parts of the buer, based on the outline structure. These commands are not undoable; their eects are simply not recorded by the undo mechanism, so you can undo right past them (see Section 13.1 [Undo], page 110). Many of these commands act on the current heading line. If point is on a heading line, that is the current heading line; if point is on a body line, the current heading line is the nearest preceding header line. C-c C-c C-c C-e Make the current heading lines body invisible (hide-entry). Make the current heading lines body visible (show-entry).

Chapter 22: Commands for Human Languages C-c C-d C-c C-s C-c C-l C-c C-k C-c C-i C-c C-t C-c C-a C-c C-q C-c C-o

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Make everything under the current heading invisible, not including the heading itself (hide-subtree). Make everything under the current heading visible, including body, subheadings, and their bodies (show-subtree). Make the body of the current heading line, and of all its subheadings, invisible (hide-leaves). Make all subheadings of the current heading line, at all levels, visible (show-branches). Make immediate subheadings (one level down) of the current heading line visible (show-children). Make all body lines in the buer invisible (hide-body). Make all lines in the buer visible (show-all). Hide everything except the top n levels of heading lines (hidesublevels). Hide everything except for the heading or body that point is in, plus the headings leading up from there to the top level of the outline (hide-other).

The simplest of these commands are C-c C-c (hide-entry), which hides the body lines directly following the current heading line, and C-c C-e (show-entry), which reveals them. Subheadings and their bodies are not aected. The commands C-c C-d (hide-subtree) and C-c C-s (show-subtree) are more powerful. They apply to the current heading lines subtree : its body, all of its subheadings, both direct and indirect, and all of their bodies. The command C-c C-l (hide-leaves) hides the body of the current heading line as well as all the bodies in its subtree; the subheadings themselves are left visible. The command C-c C-k (show-branches) reveals the subheadings, if they had previously been hidden (e.g. by C-c C-d). The command C-c C-i (show-children) is a weaker version of this; it reveals just the direct subheadings, i.e. those one level down. The command C-c C-o (hide-other) hides everything except the entry that point is in, plus its parents (the headers leading up from there to top level in the outline) and the top level headings. The remaining commands aect the whole buer. C-c C-t (hide-body) makes all body lines invisible, so that you see just the outline structure (as a special exception, it will not hide lines at the top of the le, preceding the rst header line, even though these are technically body lines). C-c C-a (show-all) makes all lines visible. C-c C-q (hide-sublevels) hides all but the top level headings; with a numeric argument n, it hides everything except the top n levels of heading lines. When incremental search nds text that is hidden by Outline mode, it makes that part of the buer visible. If you exit the search at that position, the text remains visible. You can also automatically make text visible as you navigate in it by using Reveal mode (M-x reveal-mode), a buer-local minor mode.

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You can display two views of a single outline at the same time, in dierent windows. To do this, you must create an indirect buer using M-x make-indirect-buffer. The rst argument of this command is the existing outline buer name, and its second argument is the name to use for the new indirect buer. See Section 16.6 [Indirect Buers], page 156. Once the indirect buer exists, you can display it in a window in the normal fashion, with C-x 4 b or other Emacs commands. The Outline mode commands to show and hide parts of the text operate on each buer independently; as a result, each buer can have its own view. If you want more than two views on the same outline, create additional indirect buers. 22.8.5 Folding Editing The Foldout package extends Outline mode and Outline minor mode with folding commands. The idea of folding is that you zoom in on a nested portion of the outline, while hiding its relatives at higher levels. Consider an Outline mode buer with all the text and subheadings under level-1 headings hidden. To look at what is hidden under one of these headings, you could use C-c C-e (M-x show-entry) to expose the body, or C-c C-i to expose the child (level-2) headings. With Foldout, you use C-c C-z (M-x foldout-zoom-subtree). This exposes the body and child subheadings, and narrows the buer so that only the level-1 heading, the body and the level-2 headings are visible. Now to look under one of the level-2 headings, position the cursor on it and use C-c C-z again. This exposes the level-2 body and its level-3 child subheadings and narrows the buer again. Zooming in on successive subheadings can be done as much as you like. A string in the mode line shows how deep youve gone. When zooming in on a heading, to see only the child subheadings specify a numeric argument: C-u C-c C-z. The number of levels of children can be specied too (compare M-x show-children), e.g. M-2 C-c C-z exposes two levels of child subheadings. Alternatively, the body can be specied with a negative argument: M-- C-c C-z. The whole subtree can be expanded, similarly to C-c C-s (M-x show-subtree), by specifying a zero argument: M-0 C-c C-z. While youre zoomed in, you can still use Outline modes exposure and hiding functions without disturbing Foldout. Also, since the buer is narrowed, global editing actions will only aect text under the zoomed-in heading. This is useful for restricting changes to a particular chapter or section of your document. To unzoom (exit) a fold, use C-c C-x (M-x foldout-exit-fold). This hides all the text and subheadings under the top-level heading and returns you to the previous view of the buer. Specifying a numeric argument exits that many levels of folds. Specifying a zero argument exits all folds. To cancel the narrowing of a fold without hiding the text and subheadings, specify a negative argument. For example, M--2 C-c C-x exits two folds and leaves the text and subheadings exposed.

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Foldout mode also provides mouse commands for entering and exiting folds, and for showing and hiding text: C-M-Mouse-1 zooms in on the heading clicked on single click: expose body. double click: expose subheadings. triple click: expose body and subheadings. quad click: expose entire subtree. C-M-Mouse-2 exposes text under the heading clicked on single click: expose body. double click: expose subheadings. triple click: expose body and subheadings. quad click: expose entire subtree. C-M-Mouse-3 hides text under the heading clicked on or exits fold single click: hide subtree. double click: exit fold and hide text. triple click: exit fold without hiding text. quad click: exit all folds and hide text. You can specify dierent modier keys (instead of Control-Meta-) by setting foldout-mouse-modifiers; but if you have already loaded the foldout.el library, you must reload it in order for this to take eect. To use the Foldout package, you can type M-x load-library RET foldout RET; or you can arrange for to do that automatically by putting the following in your init le: (eval-after-load "outline" (require foldout))

22.9 Org Mode


Org mode is a variant of Outline mode for using Emacs as an organizer and/or authoring system. Files with names ending in the extension .org are opened in Org mode (see Section 20.3 [Choosing Modes], page 207). To explicitly switch to Org mode, type M-x org-mode. In Org mode, as in Outline mode, each entry has a heading line that starts with one or more * characters. See Section 22.8.1 [Outline Format], page 225. In addition, any line that begins with the # character is treated as a comment. Org mode provides commands for easily viewing and manipulating the outline structure. The simplest of these commands is TAB (org-cycle). If invoked on a heading line, it cycles through the dierent visibility states of the subtree: (i) showing only that heading line, (ii) showing only the heading line and the heading lines of its direct children, if any, and (iii) showing the entire subtree. If invoked in a body line, the global binding for TAB is executed. Typing S-TAB (org-shifttab) anywhere in an Org mode buer cycles the visibility of the entire outline structure, between (i) showing only top-level heading lines, (ii) showing all heading lines but no body lines, and (iii) showing everything.

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You can move an entire entry up or down in the buer, including its body lines and subtree (if any), by typing M-<up> (org-metaup) or M-<down> (org-metadown) on the heading line. Similarly, you can promote or demote a heading line with M-<left> (org-metaleft) and M-<right> (org-metaright). These commands execute their global bindings if invoked on a body line. The following subsections give basic instructions for using Org mode as an organizer and as an authoring system. For details, see Section Introduction in The Org Manual . 22.9.1 Org as an organizer You can tag an Org entry as a TODO item by typing C-c C-t (org-todo) anywhere in the entry. This adds the keyword TODO to the heading line. Typing C-c C-t again switches the keyword to DONE; another C-c C-t removes the keyword entirely, and so forth. You can customize the keywords used by C-c C-t via the variable org-todo-keywords. Apart from marking an entry as TODO, you can attach a date to it, by typing C-c C-s (org-schedule) in the entry. This prompts for a date by popping up the Emacs Calendar (see Chapter 28 [Calendar/Diary], page 346), and then adds the tag SCHEDULED, together with the selected date, beneath the heading line. The command C-c C-d (org-deadline) has the same eect, except that it uses the tag DEADLINE. Once you have some TODO items planned in an Org le, you can add that le to the list of agenda les by typing C-c [ (org-agenda-file-to-front). Org mode is designed to let you easily maintain multiple agenda les, e.g. for organizing dierent aspects of your life. The list of agenda les is stored in the variable orgagenda-files. To view items coming from your agenda les, type M-x org-agenda. This command prompts for what you want to see: a list of things to do this week, a list of TODO items with specic keywords, etc. 22.9.2 Org as an authoring system You may want to format your Org notes nicely and to prepare them for export and publication. To export the current buer, type C-c C-e (org-export) anywhere in an Org buer. This command prompts for an export format; currently supported formats include HTML, LaTEX, OpenDocument (.odt), and PDF. Some formats, such as PDF, require certain system tools to be installed. To export several les at once to a specic directory, either locally or over the network, you must dene a list of projects through the variable org-publishproject-alist. See its documentation for details. Org supports a simple markup scheme for applying text formatting to exported documents: - This text is /emphasized/ - This text is *in bold* - This text is _underlined_ - This text uses =a teletype font=

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#+begin_quote This is a quote. #+end_quote #+begin_example This is an example. #+end_example For further details, see Section Exporting in The Org Manual and Section Publishing in The Org Manual .

22.10 TEX Mode


Emacs provides special major modes for editing les written in TEX and its related formats. TEX is a powerful text formatter written by Donald Knuth; like GNU Emacs, it is free software. LaTEX is a simplied input format for TEX, implemented using TEX macros. DocTEX is a special le format in which the LaTEX sources are written, combining sources with documentation. SliTEX is an obsolete special form of LaTEX.1 TEX mode has four variants: Plain TEX mode, LaTEX mode, DocTEX mode, and SliTEX mode. These distinct major modes dier only slightly, and are designed for editing the four dierent formats. Emacs selects the appropriate mode by looking at the contents of the buer. (This is done by the tex-mode command, which is normally called automatically when you visit a TEX-like le. See Section 20.3 [Choosing Modes], page 207.) If the contents are insucient to determine this, Emacs chooses the mode specied by the variable tex-default-mode; its default value is latex-mode. If Emacs does not guess right, you can select the correct variant of TEX mode using the command M-x plain-tex-mode, M-x latex-mode, M-x slitex-mode, or doctex-mode. The following sections document the features of TEX mode and its variants. There are several other TEX-related Emacs packages, which are not documented in this manual: BibTEX mode is a major mode for BibTEX les, which are commonly used for keeping bibliographic references for LaTEX documents. For more information, see the documentation string for the command bibtex-mode. The RefTEX package provides a minor mode which can be used with LaTEX mode to manage bibliographic references. For more information, see the RefTEX Info manual, which is distributed with Emacs. The AUCTEX package provides more advanced features for editing TEX and its related formats, including the ability to preview TEX equations within Emacs buers. Unlike BibTEX mode and the RefTEX package, AUCTEX is not distributed with Emacs by default. It can be downloaded via the Package Menu (see Chapter 32 [Packages], page 430); once installed, see the AUCTEX manual, which is included with the package.
1

It has been replaced by the slides document class, which comes with LaTEX.

Chapter 22: Commands for Human Languages 22.10.1 TEX Editing Commands " C-j

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Insert, according to context, either or " or (tex-insertquote). Insert a paragraph break (two newlines) and check the previous paragraph for unbalanced braces or dollar signs (tex-terminateparagraph).

M-x tex-validate-region Check each paragraph in the region for unbalanced braces or dollar signs. C-c { C-c } Insert {} and position point between them (tex-insert-braces). Move forward past the next unmatched close brace (up-list).

In TEX, the character " is not normally used; instead, quotations begin with and end with . TEX mode therefore binds the " key to the tex-insertquote command. This inserts after whitespace or an open brace, " after a backslash, and after any other character. As a special exception, if you type " when the text before point is either or , Emacs replaces that preceding text with a single " character. You can therefore type "" to insert ", should you ever need to do so. (You can also use C-q " to insert this character.) In TEX mode, $ has a special syntax code which attempts to understand the way TEX math mode delimiters match. When you insert a $ that is meant to exit math mode, the position of the matching $ that entered math mode is displayed for a second. This is the same feature that displays the open brace that matches a close brace that is inserted. However, there is no way to tell whether a $ enters math mode or leaves it; so when you insert a $ that enters math mode, the previous $ position is shown as if it were a match, even though they are actually unrelated. TEX uses braces as delimiters that must match. Some users prefer to keep braces balanced at all times, rather than inserting them singly. Use C-c { (tex-insertbraces) to insert a pair of braces. It leaves point between the two braces so you can insert the text that belongs inside. Afterward, use the command C-c } (up-list) to move forward past the close brace. There are two commands for checking the matching of braces. C-j (texterminate-paragraph) checks the paragraph before point, and inserts two newlines to start a new paragraph. It outputs a message in the echo area if any mismatch is found. M-x tex-validate-region checks a region, paragraph by paragraph. The errors are listed in an *Occur* buer; you can use the usual Occur mode commands in that buer, such as C-c C-c, to visit a particular mismatch (see Section 12.10 [Other Repeating Search], page 107). Note that Emacs commands count square brackets and parentheses in TEX mode, not just braces. This is not strictly correct for the purpose of checking TEX syntax. However, parentheses and square brackets are likely to be used in text as matching delimiters, and it is useful for the various motion commands and automatic match display to work with them.

Chapter 22: Commands for Human Languages 22.10.2 LaTEX Editing Commands LaTEX mode provides a few extra features not applicable to plain TEX: C-c C-o C-c C-e

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Insert \begin and \end for LaTEX block and position point on a line between them (tex-latex-block). Close the innermost LaTEX block not yet closed (tex-close-latexblock).

In LaTEX input, \begin and \end tags are used to group blocks of text. To insert a block, type C-c C-o (tex-latex-block). This prompts for a block type, and inserts the appropriate matching \begin and \end tags, leaving a blank line between the two and moving point there. When entering the block type argument to C-c C-o, you can use the usual completion commands (see Section 5.3 [Completion], page 29). The default completion list contains the standard LaTEX block types. If you want additional block types for completion, customize the list variable latex-block-names. In LaTEX input, \begin and \end tags must balance. You can use C-c C-e (tex-close-latex-block) to insert an \end tag which matches the last unmatched \begin. It also indents the \end to match the corresponding \begin, and inserts a newline after the \end tag if point is at the beginning of a line. The minor mode latex-electric-env-pair-mode automatically inserts an \end or \begin tag for you when you type the corresponding one. 22.10.3 TEX Printing Commands You can invoke TEX as an subprocess of Emacs, supplying either the entire contents of the buer or just part of it (e.g. one chapter of a larger document). C-c C-b C-c C-r C-c C-f C-c C-v C-c C-p C-c TAB C-c C-l C-c C-k C-c C-c Invoke TEX on the entire current buer (tex-buffer). Invoke TEX on the current region, together with the buers header (tex-region). Invoke TEX on the current le (tex-file). Preview the output from the last C-c C-r, C-c C-b, or C-c C-f command (tex-view). Print the output from the last C-c C-b, C-c C-r, or C-c C-f command (tex-print). Invoke BibTEX on the current le (tex-bibtex-file). Recenter the window showing output from TEX so that the last line can be seen (tex-recenter-output-buffer). Kill the TEX subprocess (tex-kill-job). Invoke some other compilation command on the entire current buer (tex-compile).

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To pass the current buer through TEX, type C-c C-b (tex-buffer). The formatted output goes in a temporary le, normally a .dvi le. Afterwards, you can type C-c C-v (tex-view) to launch an external program, such as xdvi, to view this output le. You can also type C-c C-p (tex-print) to print a hardcopy of the output le. By default, C-c C-b runs TEX in the current directory. The output of TEX also goes in this directory. To run TEX in a dierent directory, change the variable texdirectory to the desired directory name. If your environment variable TEXINPUTS contains relative directory names, or if your les contains \input commands with relative le names, then tex-directory must be "." or you will get the wrong results. Otherwise, it is safe to specify some other directory, such as "/tmp". The buers TEX variant determines what shell command C-c C-b actually runs. In Plain TEX mode, it is specied by the variable tex-run-command, which defaults to "tex". In LaTEX mode, it is specied by latex-run-command, which defaults to "latex". The shell command that C-c C-v runs to view the .dvi output is determined by the variable tex-dvi-view-command, regardless of the TEX variant. The shell command that C-c C-p runs to print the output is determined by the variable tex-dvi-print-command. Normally, Emacs automatically appends the output le name to the shell command strings described in the preceding paragraph. For example, if tex-dvi-viewcommand is "xdvi", C-c C-v runs xdvi output-file-name . In some cases, however, the le name needs to be embedded in the command, e.g. if you need to provide the le name as an argument to one command whose output is piped to another. You can specify where to put the le name with * in the command string. For example, (setq tex-dvi-print-command "dvips -f * | lpr") The terminal output from TEX, including any error messages, appears in a buer called *tex-shell*. If TEX gets an error, you can switch to this buer and feed it input (this works as in Shell mode; see Section 31.3.2 [Interactive Shell], page 403). Without switching to this buer you can scroll it so that its last line is visible by typing C-c C-l. Type C-c C-k (tex-kill-job) to kill the TEX process if you see that its output is no longer useful. Using C-c C-b or C-c C-r also kills any TEX process still running. You can also pass an arbitrary region through TEX by typing C-c C-r (texregion). This is tricky, however, because most les of TEX input contain commands at the beginning to set parameters and dene macros, without which no later part of the le will format correctly. To solve this problem, C-c C-r allows you to designate a part of the le as containing essential commands; it is included before the specied region as part of the input to TEX. The designated part of the le is called the header. To indicate the bounds of the header in Plain TEX mode, you insert two special strings in the le. Insert %**start of header before the header, and %**end of header after it. Each string must appear entirely on one line, but there may be other text on the line before or after. The lines containing the two strings are

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included in the header. If %**start of header does not appear within the rst 100 lines of the buer, C-c C-r assumes that there is no header. In LaTEX mode, the header begins with \documentclass or \documentstyle and ends with \begin{document}. These are commands that LaTEX requires you to use in any case, so nothing special needs to be done to identify the header. The commands (tex-buffer) and (tex-region) do all of their work in a temporary directory, and do not have available any of the auxiliary les needed by TEX for cross-references; these commands are generally not suitable for running the nal copy in which all of the cross-references need to be correct. When you want the auxiliary les for cross references, use C-c C-f (tex-file) which runs TEX on the current buers le, in that les directory. Before running TEX, it oers to save any modied buers. Generally, you need to use (tex-file) twice to get the cross-references right. The value of the variable tex-start-options species options for the TEX run. The value of the variable tex-start-commands species TEX commands for starting TEX. The default value causes TEX to run in nonstop mode. To run TEX interactively, set the variable to "". Large TEX documents are often split into several lesone main le, plus subles. Running TEX on a suble typically does not work; you have to run it on the main le. In order to make tex-file useful when you are editing a suble, you can set the variable tex-main-file to the name of the main le. Then tex-file runs TEX on that le. The most convenient way to use tex-main-file is to specify it in a local variable list in each of the subles. See Section 33.2.4 [File Variables], page 447. For LaTEX les, you can use BibTEX to process the auxiliary le for the current buers le. BibTEX looks up bibliographic citations in a data base and prepares the cited references for the bibliography section. The command C-c TAB (tex-bibtexfile) runs the shell command (tex-bibtex-command) to produce a .bbl le for the current buers le. Generally, you need to do C-c C-f (tex-file) once to generate the .aux le, then do C-c TAB (tex-bibtex-file), and then repeat C-c C-f (tex-file) twice more to get the cross-references correct. To invoke some other compilation program on the current TEX buer, type C-c C-c (tex-compile). This command knows how to pass arguments to many common programs, including pdflatex, yap, xdvi, and dvips. You can select your desired compilation program using the standard completion keys (see Section 5.3 [Completion], page 29). 22.10.4 TEX Mode Miscellany Entering any variant of TEX mode runs the hooks text-mode-hook and tex-modehook. Then it runs either plain-tex-mode-hook, latex-mode-hook, or slitexmode-hook, whichever is appropriate. Starting the TEX shell runs the hook texshell-hook. See Section 33.2.2 [Hooks], page 445. The commands M-x iso-iso2tex, M-x iso-tex2iso, M-x iso-iso2gtex and M-x iso-gtex2iso can be used to convert between Latin-1 encoded les and TEXencoded equivalents.

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22.11 SGML and HTML Modes


The major modes for SGML and HTML provide indentation support and commands for operating on tags. HTML mode is a slightly customized variant of SGML mode. C-c C-n C-c C-t Interactively specify a special character and insert the SGML &command for that character (sgml-name-char). Interactively specify a tag and its attributes (sgml-tag). This command asks you for a tag name and for the attribute values, then inserts both the opening tag and the closing tag, leaving point between them. With a prex argument n, the command puts the tag around the n words already present in the buer after point. Whenever a region is active, it puts the tag around the region (when Transient Mark mode is o, it does this when a numeric argument of 1 is supplied.) Interactively insert attribute values for the current tag (sgmlattributes). Skip across a balanced tag group (which extends from an opening tag through its corresponding closing tag) (sgml-skip-tag-forward). A numeric argument acts as a repeat count. Skip backward across a balanced tag group (which extends from an opening tag through its corresponding closing tag) (sgml-skip-tagbackward). A numeric argument acts as a repeat count. Delete the tag at or after point, and delete the matching tag too (sgmldelete-tag). If the tag at or after point is an opening tag, delete the closing tag too; if it is a closing tag, delete the opening tag too.

C-c C-a C-c C-f

C-c C-b

C-c C-d

C-c ? tag RET Display a description of the meaning of tag tag (sgml-tag-help). If the argument tag is empty, describe the tag at point. C-c / Insert a close tag for the innermost unterminated tag (sgml-closetag). If called within a tag or a comment, close it instead of inserting a close tag. Toggle a minor mode in which Latin-1 characters insert the corresponding SGML commands that stand for them, instead of the characters themselves (sgml-name-8bit-mode). Run a shell command (which you must specify) to validate the current buer as SGML (sgml-validate). Toggle the visibility of existing tags in the buer. This can be used as a cheap preview (sgml-tags-invisible).

C-c 8

C-c C-v C-c TAB

The major mode for editing XML documents is called nXML mode. This is a powerful major mode that can recognize many existing XML schema and use them to provide completion of XML elements via C-RET or M-TAB, as well as onthe-y XML validation with error highlighting. To enable nXML mode in an

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existing buer, type M-x nxml-mode, or, equivalently, M-x xml-mode. Emacs uses nXML mode for les which have the extension .xml. For XHTML les, which have the extension .xhtml, Emacs uses HTML mode by default; you can make it use nXML mode by customizing the variable auto-mode-alist (see Section 20.3 [Choosing Modes], page 207). nXML mode is described in an Info manual, which is distributed with Emacs. You may choose to use the less powerful SGML mode for editing XML, since XML is a strict subset of SGML. To enable SGML mode in an existing buer, type M-x sgml-mode. On enabling SGML mode, Emacs examines the buer to determine whether it is XML; if so, it sets the variable sgml-xml-mode to a non-nil value. This causes SGML modes tag insertion commands, described above, to always insert explicit closing tags as well.

22.12 Nro Mode


Nro mode, a major mode derived from Text mode, is specialized for editing nro les (e.g. Unix man pages). Type M-x nroff-mode to enter this mode. Entering Nro mode runs the hook text-mode-hook, then nroff-mode-hook (see Section 33.2.2 [Hooks], page 445). In Nro mode, nro command lines are treated as paragraph separators, pages are separated by .bp commands, and comments start with backslash-doublequote. It also denes these commands: M-n M-p M-? Move to the beginning of the next line that isnt an nro command (forward-text-line). An argument is a repeat count. Like M-n but move up (backward-text-line). Displays in the echo area the number of text lines (lines that are not nro commands) in the region (count-text-lines).

Electric Nro mode is a buer-local minor mode that can be used with Nro mode. To toggle this minor mode, type M-x electric-nroff-mode (see Section 20.2 [Minor Modes], page 205). When the mode is on, each time you type RET to end a line containing an nro command that opens a kind of grouping, the nro command to close that grouping is automatically inserted on the following line. If you use Outline minor mode with Nro mode (see Section 22.8 [Outline Mode], page 224), heading lines are lines of the form .H followed by a number (the header level).

22.13 Enriched Text


Enriched mode is a minor mode for editing formatted text les in a WYSIWYG (what you see is what you get) fashion. When Enriched mode is enabled, you can apply various formatting properties to the text in the buer, such as fonts and colors; upon saving the buer, those properties are saved together with the text, using the MIME text/enriched le format. Enriched mode is typically used with Text mode (see Section 22.7 [Text Mode], page 223). It is not compatible with Font Lock mode, which is used by many major

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modes, including most programming language modes, for syntax highlighting (see Section 11.12 [Font Lock], page 80). Unlike Enriched mode, Font Lock mode assigns text properties automatically, based on the current buer contents; those properties are not saved to disk. The le etc/enriched.doc in the Emacs distribution serves as an example of the features of Enriched mode. 22.13.1 Enriched Mode Enriched mode is a buer-local minor mode (see Section 20.2 [Minor Modes], page 205). When you visit a le that has been saved in the text/enriched format, Emacs automatically enables Enriched mode, and applies the formatting information in the le to the buer text. When you save a buer with Enriched mode enabled, it is saved using the text/enriched format, including the formatting information. To create a new le of formatted text, visit the nonexistent le and type M-x enriched-mode. This command actually toggles Enriched mode. With a prex argument, it enables Enriched mode if the argument is positive, and disables Enriched mode otherwise. If you disable Enriched mode, Emacs no longer saves the buer using the text/enriched format; any formatting properties that have been added to the buer remain in the buer, but they are not saved to disk. Enriched mode does not save all Emacs text properties, only those specied in the variable enriched-translations. These include properties for fonts, colors, indentation, and justication. If you visit a le and Emacs fails to recognize that it is in the text/enriched format, type M-x format-decode-buffer. This command prompts for a le format, and re-reads the le in that format. Specifying the text/enriched format automatically enables Enriched mode. To view a text/enriched le in raw form (as plain text with markup tags rather than formatted text), use M-x find-file-literally (see Section 15.2 [Visiting], page 125). See Section Format Conversion in the Emacs Lisp Reference Manual , for details of how Emacs recognizes and converts le formats like text/enriched. See Section Text Properties in the Emacs Lisp Reference Manual , for more information about text properties. 22.13.2 Hard and Soft Newlines In Enriched mode, Emacs distinguishes between two dierent kinds of newlines, hard newlines and soft newlines. You can also enable or disable this feature in other buers, by typing M-x use-hard-newlines. Hard newlines are used to separate paragraphs, or anywhere there needs to be a line break regardless of how the text is lled; soft newlines are used for lling. The RET (newline) and C-o (open-line) commands insert hard newlines. The ll commands, including Auto Fill (see Section 22.5.1 [Auto Fill], page 218), insert only soft newlines and delete only soft newlines, leaving hard newlines alone.

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Thus, when editing with Enriched mode, you should not use RET or C-o to break lines in the middle of lled paragraphs. Use Auto Fill mode or explicit ll commands (see Section 22.5.2 [Fill Commands], page 219) instead. Use RET or C-o where line breaks should always remain, such as in tables and lists. For such lines, you may also want to set the justication style to unfilled (see Section 22.13.6 [Enriched Justication], page 241). 22.13.3 Editing Format Information The easiest way to alter properties is with the Text Properties menu. You can get to this menu from the Edit menu in the menu bar (see Section 1.4 [Menu Bar], page 10), or with C-Mouse-2 (see Section 18.4 [Menu Mouse Clicks], page 168). Some of the commands in the Text Properties menu are listed below (you can also invoke them with M-x): Remove Face Properties Remove face properties from the region (facemenu-remove-faceprops). Remove Text Properties Remove all text properties from the region, including face properties (facemenu-remove-all). Describe Properties List all text properties and other information about the character following point (describe-text-properties). Display Faces Display a list of dened faces (list-faces-display). See Section 11.8 [Faces], page 75. Display Colors Display a list of dened colors (list-colors-display). Section 11.9 [Colors], page 76. The other menu entries are described in the following sections. 22.13.4 Faces in Enriched Text The following commands can be used to add or remove faces (see Section 11.8 [Faces], page 75). Each applies to the text in the region if the mark is active, and to the next self-inserting character if the mark is inactive. With a prex argument, each command applies to the next self-inserting character even if the region is active. M-o d M-o b M-o i M-o l M-o u Remove all face properties (facemenu-set-default). Apply the bold face (facemenu-set-bold). Apply the italic face (facemenu-set-italic). Apply the bold-italic face (facemenu-set-bold-italic). Apply the underline face (facemenu-set-underline). See

Chapter 22: Commands for Human Languages M-o o face RET Apply the face face (facemenu-set-face).

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M-x facemenu-set-foreground Prompt for a color (see Section 11.9 [Colors], page 76), and apply it as a foreground color. M-x facemenu-set-background Prompt for a color, and apply it as a background color. These command are also available via the Text Properties menu. A self-inserting character normally inherits the face properties (and most other text properties) from the preceding character in the buer. If you use one of the above commands to specify the face for the next self-inserting character, that character will not inherit the faces properties from the preceding character, but it will still inherit other text properties. Enriched mode denes two additional faces: excerpt and fixed. These correspond to codes used in the text/enriched le format. The excerpt face is intended for quotations; by default, it appears the same as italic. The fixed face species xed-width text; by default, it appears the same as bold. 22.13.5 Indentation in Enriched Text In Enriched mode, you can specify dierent amounts of indentation for the right or left margin of a paragraph or a part of a paragraph. These margins also aect ll commands such as M-q (see Section 22.5 [Filling], page 218). The Indentation submenu of Text Properties oers commands for specifying indentation: Indent More Indent the region by 4 columns (increase-left-margin). In Enriched mode, this command is also available on C-x TAB; if you supply a numeric argument, that says how many columns to add to the margin (a negative argument reduces the number of columns). Indent Less Remove 4 columns of indentation from the region. Indent Right More Make the text narrower by indenting 4 columns at the right margin. Indent Right Less Remove 4 columns of indentation from the right margin. The variable standard-indent species how many columns these commands should add to or subtract from the indentation. The default value is 4. The default right margin for Enriched mode is controlled by the variable fill-column, as usual. You can also type C-c [ (set-left-margin) and C-c ] (set-right-margin) to set the left and right margins. You can specify the margin width with a numeric argument; otherwise these commands prompt for a value via the minibuer.

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The ll prex, if any, works in addition to the specied paragraph indentation: C-x . does not include the specied indentations whitespace in the new value for the ll prex, and the ll commands look for the ll prex after the indentation on each line. See Section 22.5.3 [Fill Prex], page 220. 22.13.6 Justication in Enriched Text In Enriched mode, you can use the following commands to specify various justication styles for lling. These commands apply to the paragraph containing point, or, if the region is active, to all paragraphs overlapping the region. M-j l M-j r M-j b Align lines to the left margin (set-justification-left). Align lines to the right margin (set-justification-right). Align lines to both margins, inserting spaces in the middle of the line to achieve this (set-justification-full).

M-j c M-S M-j u

Center lines between the margins (set-justification-center). Turn o lling entirely (set-justification-none). The ll commands do nothing on text with this setting. You can, however, still indent the left margin.

You can also specify justication styles using the Justication submenu in the Text Properties menu. The default justication style is specied by the per-buer variable default-justification. Its value should be one of the symbols left, right, full, center, or none. 22.13.7 Setting Other Text Properties The Special Properties submenu of Text Properties has entries for adding or removing three other text properties: read-only, (which disallows alteration of the text), invisible (which hides text), and intangible (which disallows moving point within the text). The Remove Special menu item removes all of these special properties from the text in the region. The invisible and intangible properties are not saved.

22.14 Editing Text-based Tables


The table package provides commands to easily edit text-based tables. Here is an example of what such a table looks like:

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+-----------------+--------------------------------+-----------------+ | Command | Description | Key Binding | +-----------------+--------------------------------+-----------------+ | forward-char |Move point right N characters | C-f | | |(left if N is negative). | | | | | | +-----------------+--------------------------------+-----------------+ | backward-char |Move point left N characters | C-b | | |(right if N is negative). | | | | | | +-----------------+--------------------------------+-----------------+

When Emacs recognizes such a stretch of text as a table (see Section 22.14.3 [Table Recognition], page 243), editing the contents of each table cell will automatically resize the table, whenever the contents become too large to t in the cell. You can use the commands dened in the following sections for navigating and editing the table layout. Type M-x table-fixed-width-mode to toggle the automatic table resizing feature. 22.14.1 What is a Text-based Table? A table consists of a rectangular text area which is divided into cells. Each cell must be at least one character wide and one character high, not counting its border lines. A cell can be subdivided into more cells, but they cannot overlap. Cell border lines are drawn with three special characters, specied by the following variables: table-cell-vertical-char The character used for vertical lines. The default is |. table-cell-horizontal-chars The characters used for horizontal lines. The default is "-=". table-cell-intersection-char The character used for the intersection of horizontal and vertical lines. The default is +. The following are examples of invalid tables: +-----+ +--+ +-++--+ | | | | | || | | | | | | || | +--+ | +--+--+ +-++--+ | | | | | | +-++--+ | | | | | | | || | +--+--+ +--+--+ +-++--+ a b c From left to right: a. Overlapped cells or non-rectangular cells are not allowed. b. The border must be rectangular.

Chapter 22: Commands for Human Languages c. Cells must have a minimum width/height of one character. 22.14.2 Creating a Table

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To create a text-based table from scratch, type M-x table-insert. This command prompts for the number of table columns, the number of table rows, cell width and cell height. The cell width and cell height do not include the cell borders; each can be specied as a single integer (which means each cell is given the same width/height), or as a sequence of integers separated by spaces or commas (which specify the width/height of the individual table columns/rows, counting from left to right for table columns and from top to bottom for table rows). The specied table is then inserted at point. The table inserted by M-x table-insert contains special text properties, which tell Emacs to treat it specially as a text-based table. If you save the buer to a le and visit it again later, those properties are lost, and the table appears to Emacs as an ordinary piece of text. See the next section, for how to convert it back into a table. 22.14.3 Table Recognition Existing text-based tables in a buer, which lack the special text properties applied by M-x table-insert, are not treated specially as tables. To apply those text properties, type M-x table-recognize. This command scans the current buer, recognizes valid table cells, and applies the relevant text properties. Conversely, type M-x table-unrecognize to unrecognize all tables in the current buer, removing the special text properties and converting tables back to plain text. You can also use the following commands to selectively recognize or unrecognize tables: M-x table-recognize-region Recognize tables within the current region. M-x table-unrecognize-region Unrecognize tables within the current region. M-x table-recognize-table Recognize the table at point and activate it. M-x table-unrecognize-table Deactivate the table at point. M-x table-recognize-cell Recognize the cell at point and activate it. M-x table-unrecognize-cell Deactivate the cell at point. See Section 22.14.7 [Table Conversion], page 245, for another way to recognize a table.

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The commands M-x table-forward-cell and M-x table-backward-cell move point from the current cell to an adjacent cell. The order is cyclic: when point is in the last cell of a table, M-x table-forward-cell moves to the rst cell. Likewise, when point is on the rst cell, M-x table-backward-cell moves to the last cell. M-x table-span-cell prompts for a directionright, left, above, or below and merges the current cell with the adjacent cell in that direction. This command signals an error if the merge would result in an illegitimate cell layout. M-x table-split-cell splits the current cell vertically or horizontally, prompting for the direction with the minibuer. To split in a specic direction, use M-x table-split-cell-vertically and M-x table-split-cell-horizontally. When splitting vertically, the old cell contents are automatically split between the two new cells. When splitting horizontally, you are prompted for how to divide the cell contents, if the cell is non-empty; the options are split (divide the contents at point), left (put all the contents in the left cell), and right (put all the contents in the right cell). The following commands enlarge or shrink a cell. By default, they resize by one row or column; if a numeric argument is supplied, that species the number of rows or columns to resize by. M-x table-heighten-cell Enlarge the current cell vertically. M-x table-shorten-cell Shrink the current cell vertically. M-x table-widen-cell Enlarge the current cell horizontally. M-x table-narrow-cell Shrink the current cell horizontally. 22.14.5 Cell Justication The command M-x table-justify imposes justication on one or more cells in a text-based table. Justication determines how the text in the cell is aligned, relative to the edges of the cell. Each cell in a table can be separately justied. M-x table-justify rst prompts for what to justify; the options are cell (just the current cell), column (all cells in the current table column) and row (all cells in the current table row). The command then prompts for the justication style; the options are left, center, right, top, middle, bottom, or none (meaning no vertical justication). Horizontal and vertical justication styles are specied independently, and both types can be in eect simultaneously; for instance, you can call M-x table-justify twice, once to specify right justication and once to specify bottom justication, to align the contents of a cell to the bottom right.

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The justication style is stored in the buer as a text property, and is lost when you kill the buer or exit Emacs. However, the table recognition commands, such as M-x table-recognize (see Section 22.14.3 [Table Recognition], page 243), attempt to determine and re-apply each cells justication style, by examining its contents. To disable this feature, change the variable table-detect-cell-alignment to nil. 22.14.6 Table Rows and Columns M-x table-insert-row inserts a row of cells before the current table row. The current row, together with point, is pushed down past the new row. To insert a row after the last row at the bottom of a table, invoke this command with point below the table, just below the bottom edge. You can insert more than one row at a time by using a numeric prex argument. Similarly, M-x table-insert-column inserts a column of cells to the left of the current table column. To insert a column to the right side of the rightmost column, invoke this command with point to the right of the rightmost column, outside the table. A numeric prex argument species the number of columns to insert. M-x table-delete-column deletes the column of cells at point. Similarly, M-x table-delete-row deletes the row of cells at point. A numeric prex argument to either command species the number of columns or rows to delete. 22.14.7 Converting Between Plain Text and Tables The command M-x table-capture captures plain text in a region and turns it into a table. Unlike M-x table-recognize (see Section 22.14.3 [Table Recognition], page 243), the original text does not need to have a table appearance; it only needs to have a logical table-like structure. For example, suppose we have the following numbers, which are divided into three lines and separated horizontally by commas: 1, 2, 3, 4 5, 6, 7, 8 , 9, 10 Invoking M-x table-capture on that text produces this table: +-----+-----+-----+-----+ |1 |2 |3 |4 | +-----+-----+-----+-----+ |5 |6 |7 |8 | +-----+-----+-----+-----+ | |9 |10 | | +-----+-----+-----+-----+ M-x table-release does the opposite: it converts a table back to plain text, removing its cell borders. One application of this pair of commands is to edit a text in layout. Look at the following three paragraphs (the latter two are indented with header lines): table-capture is a powerful command. Here are some things it can do:

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Parse Cell Items

Using row and column delimiter regexps, it parses the specified text area and extracts cell items into a table.

Applying table-capture to a region containing the above text, with empty strings for the column and row delimiter regexps, creates a table with a single cell like the following one.
+----------------------------------------------------------+ |table-capture is a powerful command. | |Here are some things it can do: | | | |Parse Cell Items Using row and column delimiter regexps,| | it parses the specified text area and | | extracts cell items into a table. | +----------------------------------------------------------+

We can then use the cell splitting commands (see Section 22.14.4 [Cell Commands], page 244) to subdivide the table so that each paragraph occupies a cell:
+----------------------------------------------------------+ |table-capture is a powerful command. | |Here are some things it can do: | +-----------------+----------------------------------------+ |Parse Cell Items | Using row and column delimiter regexps,| | | it parses the specified text area and | | | extracts cell items into a table. | +-----------------+----------------------------------------+

Each cell can now be edited independently without aecting the layout of other cells. When nished, we can invoke M-x table-release to convert the table back to plain text.

22.14.8 Table Miscellany The command table-query-dimension reports the layout of the table and table cell at point. Here is an example of its output:
Cell: (21w, 6h), Table: (67w, 16h), Dim: (2c, 3r), Total Cells: 5

This indicates that the current cell is 21 characters wide and 6 lines high, the table is 67 characters wide and 16 lines high with 2 columns and 3 rows, and a total of 5 cells. M-x table-insert-sequence inserts a string into each cell. Each string is a part of a sequence i.e. a series of increasing integer numbers. M-x table-generate-source generates a table formatted for a specic markup language. It asks for a language (which must be one of html, latex, or cals), a destination buer in which to put the result, and a table caption, and then inserts the generated table into the specied buer. The default destination buer is table.lang , where lang is the language you specied.

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22.15 Two-Column Editing


Two-column mode lets you conveniently edit two side-by-side columns of text. It uses two side-by-side windows, each showing its own buer. There are three ways to enter two-column mode: F2 2 or C-x 6 2 Enter two-column mode with the current buer on the left, and on the right, a buer whose name is based on the current buers name (2C-two-columns). If the right-hand buer doesnt already exist, it starts out empty; the current buers contents are not changed. This command is appropriate when the current buer is empty or contains just one column and you want to add another column. F2 s or C-x 6 s Split the current buer, which contains two-column text, into two buers, and display them side by side (2C-split). The current buer becomes the left-hand buer, but the text in the right-hand column is moved into the right-hand buer. The current column species the split point. Splitting starts with the current line and continues to the end of the buer. This command is appropriate when you have a buer that already contains two-column text, and you wish to separate the columns temporarily. F2 b buffer RET C-x 6 b buffer RET Enter two-column mode using the current buer as the lefthand buer, and using buer buer as the right-hand buer (2C-associate-buffer). F2 s or C-x 6 s looks for a column separator, which is a string that appears on each line between the two columns. You can specify the width of the separator with a numeric argument to F2 s; that many characters, before point, constitute the separator string. By default, the width is 1, so the column separator is the character before point. When a line has the separator at the proper place, F2 s puts the text after the separator into the right-hand buer, and deletes the separator. Lines that dont have the column separator at the proper place remain unsplit; they stay in the left-hand buer, and the right-hand buer gets an empty line to correspond. (This is the way to write a line that spans both columns while in two-column mode: write it in the left-hand buer, and put an empty line in the right-hand buer.) The command C-x 6 RET or F2 RET (2C-newline) inserts a newline in each of the two buers at corresponding positions. This is the easiest way to add a new line to the two-column text while editing it in split buers. When you have edited both buers as you wish, merge them with F2 1 or C-x 6 1 (2C-merge). This copies the text from the right-hand buer as a second column in the other buer. To go back to two-column editing, use F2 s.

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Use F2 d or C-x 6 d to dissociate the two buers, leaving each as it stands (2Cdissociate). If the other buer, the one not current when you type F2 d, is empty, F2 d kills it.

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23 Editing Programs
This chapter describes Emacs features for facilitating editing programs. Some of the things these features can do are: Find or move over top-level denitions (see Section 23.2 [Defuns], page 250). Apply the usual indentation conventions of the language (see Section 23.3 [Program Indent], page 252). Balance parentheses (see Section 23.4 [Parentheses], page 256). Insert, kill or align comments (see Section 23.5 [Comments], page 258). Highlight program syntax (see Section 11.12 [Font Lock], page 80).

23.1 Major Modes for Programming Languages


Emacs has specialized major modes (see Section 20.1 [Major Modes], page 204) for many programming languages. A programming language mode typically species the syntax of expressions, the customary rules for indentation, how to do syntax highlighting for the language, and how to nd the beginning or end of a function denition. It often has features for compiling and debugging programs as well. The major mode for each language is named after the language; for instance, the major mode for the C programming language is c-mode. Emacs has programming language modes for Lisp, Scheme, the Scheme-based DSSSL expression language, Ada, ASM, AWK, C, C++, Delphi, Fortran, Icon, IDL (CORBA), IDLWAVE, Java, Javascript, Metafont (TEXs companion for font creation), Modula2, Objective-C, Octave, Pascal, Perl, Pike, PostScript, Prolog, Python, Ruby, Simula, Tcl, and VHDL. An alternative mode for Perl is called CPerl mode. Modes are also available for the scripting languages of the common GNU and Unix shells, VMS DCL, and MS-DOS/MS-Windows BAT les, and for makeles, DNS master les, and various sorts of conguration les. Ideally, Emacs should have a major mode for each programming language that you might want to edit. If it doesnt have a mode for your favorite language, the mode might be implemented in a package not distributed with Emacs (see Chapter 32 [Packages], page 430); or you can contribute one. In most programming languages, indentation should vary from line to line to illustrate the structure of the program. Therefore, in most programming language modes, typing TAB updates the indentation of the current line (see Section 23.3 [Program Indent], page 252). Furthermore, DEL is usually bound to backwarddelete-char-untabify, which deletes backward treating each tab as if it were the equivalent number of spaces, so that you can delete one column of indentation without worrying whether the whitespace consists of spaces or tabs. Entering a programming language mode runs the custom Lisp functions specied in the hook variable prog-mode-hook, followed by those specied in the modes own mode hook (see Section 20.1 [Major Modes], page 204). For instance, entering C mode runs the hooks prog-mode-hook and c-mode-hook. See Section 33.2.2 [Hooks], page 445, for information about hooks.

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The Emacs distribution contains Info manuals for the major modes for Ada, C/C++/Objective C/Java/Corba IDL/Pike/AWK, and IDLWAVE. For Fortran mode, see Section Fortran in Specialized Emacs Features .

23.2 Top-Level Denitions, or Defuns


In Emacs, a major denition at the top level in the buer, such as a function, is called a defun. The name comes from Lisp, but in Emacs we use it for all languages. 23.2.1 Left Margin Convention Many programming-language modes assume by default that any opening delimiter found at the left margin is the start of a top-level denition, or defun. Therefore, dont put an opening delimiter at the left margin unless it should have that significance. For instance, never put an open-parenthesis at the left margin in a Lisp le unless it is the start of a top-level list. The convention speeds up many Emacs operations, which would otherwise have to scan back to the beginning of the buer to analyze the syntax of the code. If you dont follow this convention, not only will you have trouble when you explicitly use the commands for motion by defuns; other features that use them will also give you trouble. This includes the indentation commands (see Section 23.3 [Program Indent], page 252) and Font Lock mode (see Section 11.12 [Font Lock], page 80). The most likely problem case is when you want an opening delimiter at the start of a line inside a string. To avoid trouble, put an escape character (\, in C and Emacs Lisp, / in some other Lisp dialects) before the opening delimiter. This will not aect the contents of the string, but will prevent that opening delimiter from starting a defun. Heres an example: (insert "Foo: \(bar) ") To help you catch violations of this convention, Font Lock mode highlights confusing opening delimiters (those that ought to be quoted) in bold red. If you need to override this convention, you can do so by setting the variable open-paren-in-column-0-is-defun-start. If this user option is set to t (the default), opening parentheses or braces at column zero always start defuns. When it is nil, defuns are found by searching for parens or braces at the outermost level. Usually, you should leave this option at its default value of t. If your buer contains parentheses or braces in column zero which dont start defuns, and it is somehow impractical to remove these parentheses or braces, it might be helpful to set the option to nil. Be aware that this might make scrolling and display in large buers quite sluggish. Furthermore, the parentheses and braces must be correctly matched throughout the buer for it to work properly.

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These commands move point or set up the region based on top-level major denitions, also called defuns. C-M-a C-M-e C-M-h Move to beginning of current or preceding defun (beginning-ofdefun). Move to end of current or following defun (end-of-defun). Put region around whole current or following defun (mark-defun).

The commands to move to the beginning and end of the current defun are C-M-a (beginning-of-defun) and C-M-e (end-of-defun). If you repeat one of these commands, or use a positive numeric argument, each repetition moves to the next defun in the direction of motion. C-M-a with a negative argument n moves forward n times to the next beginning of a defun. This is not exactly the same place that C-M-e with argument n would move to; the end of this defun is not usually exactly the same place as the beginning of the following defun. (Whitespace, comments, and perhaps declarations can separate them.) Likewise, C-M-e with a negative argument moves back to an end of a defun, which is not quite the same as C-M-a with a positive argument. To operate on the current defun, use C-M-h (mark-defun), which sets the mark at the end of the current defun and puts point at its beginning. See Section 8.2 [Marking Objects], page 49. This is the easiest way to get ready to kill the defun in order to move it to a dierent place in the le. If you use the command while point is between defuns, it uses the following defun. If you use the command while the mark is already active, it sets the mark but does not move point; furthermore, each successive use of C-M-h extends the end of the region to include one more defun. In C mode, C-M-h runs the function c-mark-function, which is almost the same as mark-defun; the dierence is that it backs up over the argument declarations, function name and returned data type so that the entire C function is inside the region. This is an example of how major modes adjust the standard key bindings so that they do their standard jobs in a way better tting a particular language. Other major modes may replace any or all of these key bindings for that purpose. 23.2.3 Imenu The Imenu facility oers a way to nd the major denitions in a le by name. It is also useful in text formatter major modes, where it treats each chapter, section, etc., as a denition. (See Section 25.3 [Tags], page 311, for a more powerful feature that handles multiple les together.) If you type M-x imenu, it reads the name of a denition using the minibuer, then moves point to that denition. You can use completion to specify the name; the command always displays the whole list of valid names. Alternatively, you can bind the command imenu to a mouse click. Then it displays mouse menus for you to select a denition name. You can also add the buers index to the menu bar by calling imenu-add-menubar-index. If you want to have this menu bar item available for all buers in a certain major mode, you

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can do this by adding imenu-add-menubar-index to its mode hook. But if you have done that, you will have to wait a little while each time you visit a le in that mode, while Emacs nds all the denitions in that buer. When you change the contents of a buer, if you add or delete denitions, you can update the buers index based on the new contents by invoking the *Rescan* item in the menu. Rescanning happens automatically if you set imenu-auto-rescan to a non-nil value. There is no need to rescan because of small changes in the text. You can customize the way the menus are sorted by setting the variable imenusort-function. By default, names are ordered as they occur in the buer; if you want alphabetic sorting, use the symbol imenu--sort-by-name as the value. You can also dene your own comparison function by writing Lisp code. Imenu provides the information to guide Which Function mode (see below). The Speedbar can also use it (see Section 18.9 [Speedbar], page 174). 23.2.4 Which Function Mode Which Function mode is a global minor mode (see Section 20.2 [Minor Modes], page 205) which displays the current function name in the mode line, updating it as you move around in a buer. To either enable or disable Which Function mode, use the command M-x which-function-mode. Although Which Function mode is a global minor mode, it takes eect only in certain major modes: those listed in the variable which-funcmodes. If the value of which-func-modes is t rather than a list of modes, then Which Function mode applies to all major modes that know how to support itin other words, all the major modes that support Imenu.

23.3 Indentation for Programs


The best way to keep a program properly indented is to use Emacs to reindent it as you change it. Emacs has commands to indent either a single line, a specied number of lines, or all of the lines inside a single parenthetical grouping. See Chapter 21 [Indentation], page 210, for general information about indentation. This section describes indentation features specic to programming language modes. Emacs also provides a Lisp pretty-printer in the pp package, which reformats Lisp objects with nice-looking indentation. 23.3.1 Basic Program Indentation Commands TAB C-j Adjust indentation of current line (indent-for-tab-command). Insert a newline, then adjust indentation of following line (newlineand-indent).

The basic indentation command is TAB (indent-for-tab-command), which was documented in Chapter 21 [Indentation], page 210. In programming language modes, TAB indents the current line, based on the indentation and syntactic con-

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tent of the preceding lines; if the region is active, TAB indents each line within the region, not just the current line. The command C-j (newline-and-indent), which was documented in Section 21.1 [Indentation Commands], page 210, does the same as RET followed by TAB: it inserts a new line, then adjusts the lines indentation. When indenting a line that starts within a parenthetical grouping, Emacs usually places the start of the line under the preceding line within the group, or under the text after the parenthesis. If you manually give one of these lines a nonstandard indentation (e.g. for aesthetic purposes), the lines below will follow it. The indentation commands for most programming language modes assume that a open-parenthesis, open-brace or other opening delimiter at the left margin is the start of a function. If the code you are editing violates this assumptioneven if the delimiters occur in strings or commentsyou must set open-paren-in-column-0is-defun-start to nil for indentation to work properly. See Section 23.2.1 [Left Margin Paren], page 250. 23.3.2 Indenting Several Lines Sometimes, you may want to reindent several lines of code at a time. One way to do this is to use the mark; when the mark is active and the region is non-empty, TAB indents every line in the region. Alternatively, the command C-M-\ (indentregion) indents every line in the region, whether or not the mark is active (see Section 21.1 [Indentation Commands], page 210). In addition, Emacs provides the following commands for indenting large chunks of code: C-M-q C-u TAB Reindent all the lines within one parenthetical grouping. Shift an entire parenthetical grouping rigidly sideways so that its rst line is properly indented.

M-x indent-code-rigidly Shift all the lines in the region rigidly sideways, but do not alter lines that start inside comments and strings. To reindent the contents of a single parenthetical grouping, position point before the beginning of the grouping and type C-M-q. This changes the relative indentation within the grouping, without aecting its overall indentation (i.e. the indentation of the line where the grouping starts). The function that C-M-q runs depends on the major mode; it is indent-pp-sexp in Lisp mode, c-indent-exp in C mode, etc. To correct the overall indentation as well, type TAB rst. If you like the relative indentation within a grouping but not the indentation of its rst line, move point to that rst line and type C-u TAB. In Lisp, C, and some other major modes, TAB with a numeric argument reindents the current line as usual, then reindents by the same amount all the lines in the parenthetical grouping starting on the current line. It is clever, though, and does not alter lines that start inside strings. Neither does it alter C preprocessor lines when in C mode, but it does reindent any continuation lines that may be attached to them.

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The command M-x indent-code-rigidly rigidly shifts all the lines in the region sideways, like indent-rigidly does (see Section 21.1 [Indentation Commands], page 210). It doesnt alter the indentation of lines that start inside a string, unless the region also starts inside that string. The prex arg species the number of columns to indent. 23.3.3 Customizing Lisp Indentation The indentation pattern for a Lisp expression can depend on the function called by the expression. For each Lisp function, you can choose among several predened patterns of indentation, or dene an arbitrary one with a Lisp program. The standard pattern of indentation is as follows: the second line of the expression is indented under the rst argument, if that is on the same line as the beginning of the expression; otherwise, the second line is indented underneath the function name. Each following line is indented under the previous line whose nesting depth is the same. If the variable lisp-indent-offset is non-nil, it overrides the usual indentation pattern for the second line of an expression, so that such lines are always indented lisp-indent-offset more columns than the containing list. Certain functions override the standard pattern. Functions whose names start with def treat the second lines as the start of a body, by indenting the second line lisp-body-indent additional columns beyond the open-parenthesis that starts the expression. You can override the standard pattern in various ways for individual functions, according to the lisp-indent-function property of the function name. This is normally done for macro denitions, using the declare construct. See Section Dening Macros in the Emacs Lisp Reference Manual . 23.3.4 Commands for C Indentation Here are special features for indentation in C mode and related modes: C-c C-q C-M-q Reindent the current top-level function denition or aggregate type declaration (c-indent-defun). Reindent each line in the balanced expression that follows point (cindent-exp). A prex argument inhibits warning messages about invalid syntax. Reindent the current line, and/or in some cases insert a tab character (c-indent-command). If c-tab-always-indent is t, this command always reindents the current line and does nothing else. This is the default. If that variable is nil, this command reindents the current line only if point is at the left margin or in the lines indentation; otherwise, it inserts a tab (or the equivalent number of spaces, if indent-tabs-mode is nil).

TAB

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Any other value (not nil or t) means always reindent the line, and also insert a tab if within a comment or a string. To reindent the whole current buer, type C-x h C-M-\. This rst selects the whole buer as the region, then reindents that region. To reindent the current block, use C-M-u C-M-q. This moves to the front of the block and then reindents it all. 23.3.5 Customizing C Indentation C mode and related modes use a exible mechanism for customizing indentation. C mode indents a source line in two steps: rst it classies the line syntactically according to its contents and context; second, it determines the indentation oset associated by your selected style with the syntactic construct and adds this onto the indentation of the anchor statement. C-c . RET style RET Select a predened style style (c-set-style). A style is a named collection of customizations that can be used in C mode and the related modes. Section Styles in The CC Mode Manual , for a complete description. Emacs comes with several predened styles, including gnu, k&r, bsd, stroustrup, linux, python, java, whitesmith, ellemtel, and awk. Some of these styles are primarily intended for one language, but any of them can be used with any of the languages supported by these modes. To nd out what a style looks like, select it and reindent some code, e.g., by typing C-M-Q at the start of a function denition. To choose a style for the current buer, use the command C-c .. Specify a style name as an argument (case is not signicant). This command aects the current buer only, and it aects only future invocations of the indentation commands; it does not reindent the code already in the buer. To reindent the whole buer in the new style, you can type C-x h C-M-\. You can also set the variable c-default-style to specify the default style for various major modes. Its value should be either the styles name (a string) or an alist, in which each element species one major mode and which indentation style to use for it. For example, (setq c-default-style ((java-mode . "java") (awk-mode . "awk") (other . "gnu"))) species explicit choices for Java and AWK modes, and the default gnu style for the other C-like modes. (These settings are actually the defaults.) This variable takes eect when you select one of the C-like major modes; thus, if you specify a new default style for Java mode, you can make it take eect in an existing Java mode buer by typing M-x java-mode there. The gnu style species the formatting recommended by the GNU Project for C; it is the default, so as to encourage use of our recommended style.

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See Section Indentation Engine Basics in the CC Mode Manual , and Section Customizing Indentation in the CC Mode Manual , for more information on customizing indentation for C and related modes, including how to override parts of an existing style and how to dene your own styles. As an alternative to specifying a style, you can tell Emacs to guess a style by typing M-x c-guess in a sample code buer. You can then apply the guessed style to other buers with M-x c-guess-install. See Section Guessing the Style in the CC Mode Manual , for details.

23.4 Commands for Editing with Parentheses


This section describes the commands and features that take advantage of the parenthesis structure in a program, or help you keep it balanced. When talking about these facilities, the term parenthesis also includes braces, brackets, or whatever delimiters are dened to match in pairs. The major mode controls which delimiters are signicant, through the syntax table (see Section Syntax Tables in The Emacs Lisp Reference Manual ). In Lisp, only parentheses count; in C, these commands apply to braces and brackets too. You can use M-x check-parens to nd any unbalanced parentheses and unbalanced string quotes in the buer. 23.4.1 Expressions with Balanced Parentheses Each programming language mode has its own denition of a balanced expression. Balanced expressions typically include individual symbols, numbers, and string constants, as well as pieces of code enclosed in a matching pair of delimiters. The following commands deal with balanced expressions (in Emacs, such expressions are referred to internally as sexps 1 ). C-M-f C-M-b C-M-k C-M-t C-M-@ C-M-SPC Move forward over a balanced expression (forward-sexp). Move backward over a balanced expression (backward-sexp). Kill balanced expression forward (kill-sexp). Transpose expressions (transpose-sexps). Put mark after following expression (mark-sexp).

To move forward over a balanced expression, use C-M-f (forward-sexp). If the rst signicant character after point is an opening delimiter (e.g. (, [ or { in C), this command moves past the matching closing delimiter. If the character begins a symbol, string, or number, the command moves over that. The command C-M-b (backward-sexp) moves backward over a balanced expressionlike C-M-f, but in the reverse direction. If the expression is preceded by any prex characters (single-quote, backquote and comma, in Lisp), the command moves back over them as well.
1

The word sexp is used to refer to an expression in Lisp.

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C-M-f or C-M-b with an argument repeats that operation the specied number of times; with a negative argument means to move in the opposite direction. In most modes, these two commands move across comments as if they were whitespace. Note that their keys, C-M-f and C-M-b, are analogous to C-f and C-b, which move by characters (see Section 4.2 [Moving Point], page 18), and M-f and M-b, which move by words (see Section 22.1 [Words], page 214). To kill a whole balanced expression, type C-M-k (kill-sexp). This kills the text that C-M-f would move over. C-M-t (transpose-sexps) switches the positions of the previous balanced expression and the next one. It is analogous to the C-t command, which transposes characters (see Section 13.2 [Transpose], page 111). An argument to C-M-t serves as a repeat count, moving the previous expression over that many following ones. A negative argument moves the previous balanced expression backwards across those before it. An argument of zero, rather than doing nothing, transposes the balanced expressions ending at or after point and the mark. To operate on balanced expressions with a command which acts on the region, type C-M-SPC (mark-sexp). This sets the mark where C-M-f would move to. While the mark is active, each successive call to this command extends the region by shifting the mark by one expression. Positive or negative numeric arguments move the mark forward or backward by the specied number of expressions. The alias C-M-@ is equivalent to C-M-SPC. See Section 8.2 [Marking Objects], page 49, for more information about this and related commands. In languages that use inx operators, such as C, it is not possible to recognize all balanced expressions because there can be multiple possibilities at a given position. For example, C mode does not treat foo + bar as a single expression, even though it is one C expression; instead, it recognizes foo as one expression and bar as another, with the + as punctuation between them. However, C mode recognizes (foo + bar) as a single expression, because of the parentheses. 23.4.2 Moving in the Parenthesis Structure The following commands move over groupings delimited by parentheses (or whatever else serves as delimiters in the language you are working with). They ignore strings and comments, including any parentheses within them, and also ignore parentheses that are quoted with an escape character. These commands are mainly intended for editing programs, but can be useful for editing any text containing parentheses. They are referred to internally as list commands because in Lisp these groupings are lists. These commands assume that the starting point is not inside a string or a comment. If you invoke them from inside a string or comment, the results are unreliable. C-M-n C-M-p C-M-u C-M-d Move forward over a parenthetical group (forward-list). Move backward over a parenthetical group (backward-list). Move up in parenthesis structure (backward-up-list). Move down in parenthesis structure (down-list).

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The list commands C-M-n (forward-list) and C-M-p (backward-list) move forward or backward over one (or n) parenthetical groupings. C-M-n and C-M-p try to stay at the same level in the parenthesis structure. To move up one (or n) levels, use C-M-u (backward-up-list). C-M-u moves backward up past one unmatched opening delimiter. A positive argument serves as a repeat count; a negative argument reverses the direction of motion, so that the command moves forward and up one or more levels. To move down in the parenthesis structure, use C-M-d (down-list). In Lisp mode, where ( is the only opening delimiter, this is nearly the same as searching for a (. An argument species the number of levels to go down. 23.4.3 Matching Parentheses Emacs has a number of parenthesis matching features, which make it easy to see how and whether parentheses (or other delimiters) match up. Whenever you type a self-inserting character that is a closing delimiter, the cursor moves momentarily to the location of the matching opening delimiter, provided that is on the screen. If it is not on the screen, Emacs displays some of the text near it in the echo area. Either way, you can tell which grouping you are closing o. If the opening delimiter and closing delimiter are mismatchedsuch as in [x)a warning message is displayed in the echo area. Three variables control the display of matching parentheses: blink-matching-paren turns the feature on or o: nil disables it, but the default is t to enable it. blink-matching-delay says how many seconds to leave the cursor on the matching opening delimiter, before bringing it back to the real location of point. This may be an integer or oating-point number; the default is 1. blink-matching-paren-distance species how many characters back to search to nd the matching opening delimiter. If the match is not found in that distance, Emacs stops scanning and nothing is displayed. The default is 102400. Show Paren mode, a global minor mode, provides a more powerful kind of automatic matching. Whenever point is before an opening delimiter or after a closing delimiter, both that delimiter and its opposite delimiter are highlighted. To toggle Show Paren mode, type M-x show-paren-mode. Electric Pair mode, a global minor mode, provides a way to easily insert matching delimiters. Whenever you insert an opening delimiter, the matching closing delimiter is automatically inserted as well, leaving point between the two. To toggle Electric Pair mode, type M-x electric-pair-mode.

23.5 Manipulating Comments


Because comments are such an important part of programming, Emacs provides special commands for editing and inserting comments. It can also do spell checking on comments with Flyspell Prog mode (see Section 13.4 [Spelling], page 112).

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Some major modes have special rules for indenting dierent kinds of comments. For example, in Lisp code, comments starting with two semicolons are indented as if they were lines of code, while those starting with three semicolons are supposed to be aligned to the left margin and are often used for sectioning purposes. Emacs understand these conventions; for instance, typing TAB on a comment line will indent the comment to the appropriate position. ;; This function is just an example. ;;; Here either two or three semicolons are appropriate. (defun foo (x) ;;; And now, the first part of the function: ;; The following line adds one. (1+ x)) ; This line adds one. 23.5.1 Comment Commands The following commands operate on comments: M-; C-u M-; C-x ; C-M-j M-j Insert or realign comment on current line; if the region is active, comment or uncomment the region instead (comment-dwim). Kill comment on current line (comment-kill). Set comment column (comment-set-column). Like RET followed by inserting and aligning a comment (commentindent-new-line). See Section 23.5.2 [Multi-Line Comments], page 260.

M-x comment-region C-c C-c (in C-like modes) Add comment delimiters to all the lines in the region. The command to create or align a comment is M-; (comment-dwim). The word dwim is an acronym for Do What I Mean; it indicates that this command can be used for many dierent jobs relating to comments, depending on the situation where you use it. When a region is active (see Chapter 8 [Mark], page 47), M-; either adds comment delimiters to the region, or removes them. If every line in the region is already a comment, it uncomments each of those lines by removing their comment delimiters. Otherwise, it adds comment delimiters to enclose the text in the region. If you supply a prex argument to M-; when a region is active, that species the number of comment delimiters to add or delete. A positive argument n adds n delimiters, while a negative argument -n removes n delimiters. If the region is not active, and there is no existing comment on the current line, M-; adds a new comment to the current line. If the line is blank (i.e. empty or containing only whitespace characters), the comment is indented to the same position where TAB would indent to (see Section 23.3.1 [Basic Indent], page 252). If the line is non-blank, the comment is placed after the last non-whitespace character on the line; normally, Emacs tries putting it at the column specied by the variable

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comment-column (see Section 23.5.3 [Options for Comments], page 261), but if the line already extends past that column, it puts the comment at some suitable position, usually separated from the non-comment text by at least one space. In each case, Emacs places point after the comments starting delimiter, so that you can start typing the comment text right away. You can also use M-; to align an existing comment. If a line already contains the comment-start string, M-; realigns it to the conventional alignment and moves point after the comments starting delimiter. As an exception, comments starting in column 0 are not moved. Even when an existing comment is properly aligned, M-; is still useful for moving directly to the start of the comment text. C-u M-; (comment-dwim with a prex argument) kills any comment on the current line, along with the whitespace before it. Since the comment is saved to the kill ring, you can reinsert it on another line by moving to the end of that line, doing C-y, and then M-; to realign the comment. You can achieve the same eect as C-u M-; by typing M-x comment-kill (comment-dwim actually calls comment-kill as a subroutine when it is given a prex argument). The command M-x comment-region is equivalent to calling M-; on an active region, except that it always acts on the region, even if the mark is inactive. In C mode and related modes, this command is bound to C-c C-c. The command M-x uncomment-region uncomments each line in the region; a numeric prex argument species the number of comment delimiters to remove (negative arguments specify the number of comment to delimiters to add). For C-like modes, you can congure the exact eect of M-; by setting the variables c-indent-comment-alist and c-indent-comments-syntactically-p. For example, on a line ending in a closing brace, M-; puts the comment one space after the brace rather than at comment-column. For full details see Section Comment Commands in The CC Mode Manual . 23.5.2 Multiple Lines of Comments If you are typing a comment and wish to continue it to another line, type M-j or C-M-j (comment-indent-new-line). This breaks the current line, and inserts the necessary comment delimiters and indentation to continue the comment. For languages with closing comment delimiters (e.g. */ in C), the exact behavior of M-j depends on the value of the variable comment-multi-line. If the value is nil, the command closes the comment on the old line and starts a new comment on the new line. Otherwise, it opens a new line within the current comment delimiters. When Auto Fill mode is on, going past the ll column while typing a comment also continues the comment, in the same way as an explicit invocation of M-j. To turn existing lines into comment lines, use M-; with the region active, or use M-x comment-region as described in the preceding section. You can congure C Mode such that when you type a / at the start of a line in a multi-line block comment, this closes the comment. Enable the comment-closeslash clean-up for this. See Section Clean-ups in The CC Mode Manual .

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As mentioned in Section 23.5.1 [Comment Commands], page 259, when the M-j command adds a comment to a line, it tries to place the comment at the column specied by the buer-local variable comment-column. You can set either the local value or the default value of this buer-local variable in the usual way (see Section 33.2.3 [Locals], page 446). Alternatively, you can type C-x ; (comment-set-column) to set the value of comment-column in the current buer to the column where point is currently located. C-u C-x ; sets the comment column to match the last comment before point in the buer, and then does a M-; to align the current lines comment under the previous one. The comment commands recognize comments based on the regular expression that is the value of the variable comment-start-skip. Make sure this regexp does not match the null string. It may match more than the comment starting delimiter in the strictest sense of the word; for example, in C mode the value of the variable is "\\(//+\\|/\\*+\\)\\s *", which matches extra stars and spaces after the /* itself, and accepts C++ style comments also. (Note that \\ is needed in Lisp syntax to include a \ in the string, which is needed to deny the rst star its special meaning in regexp syntax. See Section 12.6 [Regexp Backslash], page 100.) When a comment command makes a new comment, it inserts the value of comment-start as an opening comment delimiter. It also inserts the value of comment-end after point, as a closing comment delimiter. For example, in Lisp mode, comment-start is ";" and comment-end is "" (the empty string). In C mode, comment-start is "/* " and comment-end is " */". The variable comment-padding species a string that the commenting commands should insert between the comment delimiter(s) and the comment text. The default, " ", species a single space. Alternatively, the value can be a number, which species that number of spaces, or nil, which means no spaces at all. The variable comment-multi-line controls how M-j and Auto Fill mode continue comments over multiple lines. See Section 23.5.2 [Multi-Line Comments], page 260. The variable comment-indent-function should contain a function that will be called to compute the alignment for a newly inserted comment or for aligning an existing comment. It is set dierently by various major modes. The function is called with no arguments, but with point at the beginning of the comment, or at the end of a line if a new comment is to be inserted. It should return the column in which the comment ought to start. For example, in Lisp mode, the indent hook function bases its decision on how many semicolons begin an existing comment, and on the code in the preceding lines.

23.6 Documentation Lookup


Emacs provides several features you can use to look up the documentation of functions, variables and commands that you plan to use in your program.

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For major modes that apply to languages which have documentation in Info, you can use C-h S (info-lookup-symbol) to view the Info documentation for a symbol used in the program. You specify the symbol with the minibuer; the default is the symbol appearing in the buer at point. For example, in C mode this looks for the symbol in the C Library Manual. The command only works if the appropriate manuals Info les are installed. The major mode determines where to look for documentation for the symbol which Info les to look in, and which indices to search. You can also use M-x info-lookup-file to look for documentation for a le name. If you use C-h S in a major mode that does not support it, it asks you to specify the symbol help mode. You should enter a command such as c-mode that would select a major mode which C-h S does support. 23.6.2 Man Page Lookup On Unix, the main form of on-line documentation was the manual page or man page. In the GNU operating system, we aim to replace man pages with better-organized manuals that you can browse with Info (see Section 7.7 [Misc Help], page 44). This process is not nished, so it is still useful to read manual pages. You can read the man page for an operating system command, library function, or system call, with the M-x man command. This prompts for a topic, with completion (see Section 5.3 [Completion], page 29), and runs the man program to format the corresponding man page. If the system permits, it runs man asynchronously, so that you can keep on editing while the page is being formatted. The result goes in a buer named *Man topic *. These buers use a special major mode, Man mode, that facilitates scrolling and jumping to other manual pages. For details, type C-h m while in a Man mode buer. Each man page belongs to one of ten or more sections, each named by a digit or by a digit and a letter. Sometimes there are man pages with the same name in different sections. To read a man page from a specic section, type topic (section ) or section topic when M-x manual-entry prompts for the topic. For example, the man page for the C library function chmod is in section 2, but there is a shell command of the same name, whose man page is in section 1; to view the former, type M-x manual-entry RET chmod(2) RET. If you do not specify a section, M-x man normally displays only the rst man page found. On some systems, the man program accepts a -a command-line option, which tells it to display all the man pages for the specied topic. To make use of this, change the value of the variable Man-switches to "-a". Then, in the Man mode buer, you can type M-n and M-p to switch between man pages in dierent sections. The mode line shows how many manual pages are available. An alternative way of reading manual pages is the M-x woman command. Unlike M-x man, it does not run any external programs to format and display the man pages; the formatting is done by Emacs, so it works on systems such as MS-Windows where the man program may be unavailable. It prompts for a man page, and displays it in a buer named *WoMan section topic .

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M-x woman computes the completion list for manpages the rst time you invoke the command. With a numeric argument, it recomputes this list; this is useful if you add or delete manual pages. If you type a name of a manual page and M-x woman nds that several manual pages by the same name exist in dierent sections, it pops up a window with possible candidates asking you to choose one of them. For more information about setting up and using M-x woman, see the WoMan Info manual, which is distributed with Emacs. 23.6.3 Emacs Lisp Documentation Lookup When editing Emacs Lisp code, you can use the commands C-h f (describefunction) and C-h v (describe-variable) to view the built-in documentation for the Lisp functions and variables that you want to use. See Section 7.2 [Name Help], page 40. Eldoc is a buer-local minor mode that helps with looking up Lisp documention. When it is enabled, the echo area displays some useful information whenever there is a Lisp function or variable at point; for a function, it shows the argument list, and for a variable it shows the rst line of the variables documentation string. To toggle Eldoc mode, type M-x eldoc-mode. Eldoc mode can be used with the Emacs Lisp and Lisp Interaction major modes.

23.7 Hideshow minor mode


Hideshow mode is a buer-local minor mode that allows you to selectively display portions of a program, which are referred to as blocks. Type M-x hs-minor-mode to toggle this minor mode (see Section 20.2 [Minor Modes], page 205). When you use Hideshow mode to hide a block, the block disappears from the screen, to be replaced by an ellipsis (three periods in a row). Just what constitutes a block depends on the major mode. In C mode and related modes, blocks are delimited by braces, while in Lisp mode they are delimited by parentheses. Multiline comments also count as blocks. Hideshow mode provides the following commands: C-c @ C-h C-c @ C-s C-c @ C-c S-Mouse-2 C-c @ C-M-h Hide all top-level blocks (hs-hide-all). C-c @ C-M-s Show all blocks in the buer (hs-show-all). C-c @ C-l Hide all blocks n levels below this block (hs-hide-level). These variables can be used to customize Hideshow mode: Hide the current block (hs-hide-block). Show the current block (hs-show-block). Either hide or show the current block (hs-toggle-hiding). Toggle hiding for the block you click on (hs-mouse-toggle-hiding).

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hs-isearch-open This variable species the conditions under which incremental search should unhide a hidden block when matching text occurs within the block. Its value should be either code (unhide only code blocks), comment (unhide only comments), t (unhide both code blocks and comments), or nil (unhide neither code blocks nor comments). The default value is code.

23.8 Completion for Symbol Names


Completion is normally done in the minibuer (see Section 5.3 [Completion], page 29), but you can also complete symbol names in ordinary Emacs buers. In programming language modes, type C-M-i or M-TAB to complete the partial symbol before point. On graphical displays, the M-TAB key is usually reserved by the window manager for switching graphical windows, so you should type C-M-i or ESC TAB instead. In most programming language modes, C-M-i (or M-TAB) invokes the command completion-at-point, which generates its completion list in a exible way. If Semantic mode is enabled, it tries to use the Semantic parser data for completion (see Section 23.10 [Semantic], page 265). If Semantic mode is not enabled or fails at performing completion, it tries to complete using the selected tags table (see Section 25.3 [Tags], page 311). If in Emacs Lisp mode, it performs completion using the function, variable, or property names dened in the current Emacs session. In all other respects, in-buer symbol completion behaves like minibuer completion. For instance, if Emacs cannot complete to a unique symbol, it displays a list of completion alternatives in another window. See Section 5.3 [Completion], page 29. In Text mode and related modes, M-TAB completes words based on the spellcheckers dictionary. See Section 13.4 [Spelling], page 112.

23.9 Glasses minor mode


Glasses mode is a buer-local minor mode that makes it easier to read mixedcase (or CamelCase) symbols like unReadableSymbol, by altering how they are displayed. By default, it displays extra underscores between each lower-case letter and the following capital letter. This does not alter the buer text, only how it is displayed. To toggle Glasses mode, type M-x glasses-mode (see Section 20.2 [Minor Modes], page 205). When Glasses mode is enabled, the minor mode indicator o^o appears in the mode line. For more information about Glasses mode, type C-h P glasses RET.

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23.10 Semantic
Semantic is a package that provides language-aware editing commands based on source code parsers. This section provides a brief description of Semantic; for full details, see the Semantic Info manual, which is distributed with Emacs. Most of the language aware features in Emacs, such as Font Lock mode (see Section 11.12 [Font Lock], page 80), rely on rules of thumb2 that usually give good results but are never completely exact. In contrast, the parsers used by Semantic have an exact understanding of programming language syntax. This allows Semantic to provide search, navigation, and completion commands that are powerful and precise. To begin using Semantic, type M-x semantic-mode or click on the menu item named Source Code Parsers (Semantic) in the Tools menu. This enables Semantic mode, a global minor mode. When Semantic mode is enabled, Emacs automatically attempts to parses each le you visit. Currently, Semantic understands C, C++, Scheme, Javascript, Java, HTML, and Make. Within each parsed buer, the following commands are available: C-c , j C-c , J C-c , SPC Prompt for the name of a function dened in the current le, and move point there (semantic-complete-jump-local). Prompt for the name of a function dened in any le Emacs has parsed, and move point there (semantic-complete-jump). Display a list of possible completions for the symbol at point (semantic-complete-analyze-inline). This also activates a set of special key bindings for choosing a completion: RET accepts the current completion, M-n and M-p cycle through possible completions, TAB completes as far as possible and then cycles, and C-g or any other key aborts completion. Display a list of the possible completions of the symbol at point, in another window (semantic-analyze-possible-completions).

C-c , l

In addition to the above commands, the Semantic package provides a variety of other ways to make use of parser information. For instance, you can use it to display a list of completions when Emacs is idle.

23.11 Other Features Useful for Editing Programs


Some Emacs commands that arent designed specically for editing programs are useful for that nonetheless. The Emacs commands that operate on words, sentences and paragraphs are useful for editing code. Most symbols names contain words (see Section 22.1 [Words], page 214), while sentences can be found in strings and comments (see Section 22.2 [Sentences], page 215). As for paragraphs, they are dened in most programming language modes to begin and end at blank lines (see Section 22.3 [Paragraphs],
2

Regular expressions and syntax tables.

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page 216). Therefore, judicious use of blank lines to make the program clearer will also provide useful chunks of text for the paragraph commands to work on. Auto Fill mode, if enabled in a programming language major mode, indents the new lines which it creates. Electric Layout mode (M-x electric-layout-mode) is a global minor mode that automatically inserts newlines when you type certain characters; for example, {, } and ; in Javascript mode. Apart from Hideshow mode (see Section 23.7 [Hideshow], page 263), another way to selectively display parts of a program is to use the selective display feature (see Section 11.17 [Selective Display], page 85). Programming modes often also support Outline minor mode (see Section 22.8 [Outline Mode], page 224), which can be used with the Foldout package (see Section 22.8.5 [Foldout], page 228).

23.12 C and Related Modes


This section gives a brief description of the special features available in C, C++, Objective-C, Java, CORBA IDL, Pike and AWK modes. (These are called C mode and related modes.) For more details, see the CC mode Info manual, which is distributed with Emacs. 23.12.1 C Mode Motion Commands This section describes commands for moving point, in C mode and related modes. C-M-a C-M-e Move point to the beginning or end of the current function or top-level denition. In languages with enclosing scopes (such as C++s classes) the current function is the immediate one, possibly inside a scope. Otherwise it is the one dened by the least enclosing braces. (By contrast, beginning-of-defun and end-of-defun search for braces in column zero.) See Section 23.2.2 [Moving by Defuns], page 251. Move point back to the containing preprocessor conditional, leaving the mark behind. A prex argument acts as a repeat count. With a negative argument, move point forward to the end of the containing preprocessor conditional. #elif is equivalent to #else followed by #if, so the function will stop at a #elif when going backward, but not when going forward. C-c C-p Move point back over a preprocessor conditional, leaving the mark behind. A prex argument acts as a repeat count. With a negative argument, move forward. Move point forward across a preprocessor conditional, leaving the mark behind. A prex argument acts as a repeat count. With a negative argument, move backward. Move point to the beginning of the innermost C statement (cbeginning-of-statement). If point is already at the beginning of

C-c C-u

C-c C-n

M-a

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a statement, move to the beginning of the preceding statement. With prex argument n, move back n 1 statements. In comments or in strings which span more than one line, this command moves by sentences instead of statements. M-e Move point to the end of the innermost C statement or sentence; like M-a except that it moves in the other direction (c-end-ofstatement).

23.12.2 Electric C Characters In C mode and related modes, certain printing characters are electricin addition to inserting themselves, they also reindent the current line, and optionally also insert newlines. The electric characters are {, }, :, #, ;, ,, <, >, /, *, (, and ). You might nd electric indentation inconvenient if you are editing chaotically indented code. If you are new to CC Mode, you might nd it disconcerting. You can toggle electric action with the command C-c C-l; when it is enabled, /l appears in the mode line after the mode name: C-c C-l Toggle electric action (c-toggle-electric-state). With a positive prex argument, this command enables electric action, with a negative one it disables it.

Electric characters insert newlines only when, in addition to the electric state, the auto-newline feature is enabled (indicated by /la in the mode line after the mode name). You can turn this feature on or o with the command C-c C-a: C-c C-a Toggle the auto-newline feature (c-toggle-auto-newline). With a prex argument, this command turns the auto-newline feature on if the argument is positive, and o if it is negative.

Usually the CC Mode style congures the exact circumstances in which Emacs inserts auto-newlines. You can also congure this directly. See Section Custom Auto-newlines in The CC Mode Manual . 23.12.3 Hungry Delete Feature in C If you want to delete an entire block of whitespace at point, you can use hungry deletion. This deletes all the contiguous whitespace either before point or after point in a single operation. Whitespace here includes tabs and newlines, but not comments or preprocessor commands. C-c C-DEL C-c DEL Delete the entire block of whitespace preceding point (c-hungrydelete-backwards).

C-c C-d C-c C-DELETE C-c DELETE Delete the entire block of whitespace after point (c-hungry-deleteforward).

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As an alternative to the above commands, you can enable hungry delete mode. When this feature is enabled (indicated by /h in the mode line after the mode name), a single DEL deletes all preceding whitespace, not just one space, and a single C-c C-d (but not plain DELETE) deletes all following whitespace. M-x c-toggle-hungry-state Toggle the hungry-delete feature (c-toggle-hungry-state). With a prex argument, this command turns the hungry-delete feature on if the argument is positive, and o if it is negative. The variable c-hungry-delete-key controls whether the hungry-delete feature is enabled. 23.12.4 Other Commands for C Mode C-c C-w M-x subword-mode Enable (or disable) subword mode. In subword mode, Emacss word commands recognize upper case letters in StudlyCapsIdentifiers as word boundaries. This is indicated by the ag /w on the mode line after the mode name (e.g. C/law). You can even use M-x subword-mode in non-CC Mode buers. In the GNU project, we recommend using underscores to separate words within an identier in C or C++, rather than using case distinctions. M-x c-context-line-break This command inserts a line break and indents the new line in a manner appropriate to the context. In normal code, it does the work of C-j (newline-and-indent), in a C preprocessor line it additionally inserts a \ at the line break, and within comments its like M-j (cindent-new-comment-line). c-context-line-break isnt bound to a key by default, but it needs a binding to be useful. The following code will bind it to C-j. We use c-initialization-hook here to make sure the keymap is loaded before we try to change it. (defun my-bind-clb () (define-key c-mode-base-map "\C-j" c-context-line-break)) (add-hook c-initialization-hook my-bind-clb) C-M-h M-q Put mark at the end of a function denition, and put point at the beginning (c-mark-function). Fill a paragraph, handling C and C++ comments (c-fill-paragraph). If any part of the current line is a comment or within a comment, this command lls the comment or the paragraph of it that point is in, preserving the comment indentation and comment delimiters.

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Run the C preprocessor on the text in the region, and show the result, which includes the expansion of all the macro calls (c-macro-expand). The buer text before the region is also included in preprocessing, for the sake of macros dened there, but the output from this part isnt shown. When you are debugging C code that uses macros, sometimes it is hard to gure out precisely how the macros expand. With this command, you dont have to gure it out; you can see the expansions. Insert or align \ characters at the ends of the lines of the region (cbackslash-region). This is useful after writing or editing a C macro denition. If a line already ends in \, this command adjusts the amount of whitespace before it. Otherwise, it inserts a new \. However, the last line in the region is treated specially; no \ is inserted on that line, and any \ there is deleted.

C-c C-\

M-x cpp-highlight-buffer Highlight parts of the text according to its preprocessor conditionals. This command displays another buer named *CPP Edit*, which serves as a graphic menu for selecting how to display particular kinds of conditionals and their contents. After changing various settings, click on [A]pply these settings (or go to that buer and type a) to rehighlight the C mode buer accordingly. C-c C-s Display the syntactic information about the current source line (cshow-syntactic-information). This information directs how the line is indented.

M-x cwarn-mode M-x global-cwarn-mode CWarn minor mode highlights certain suspicious C and C++ constructions: Assignments inside expressions. Semicolon following immediately after if, for, and while (except after a do ... while statement); C++ functions with reference parameters. You can enable the mode for one buer with the command M-x cwarn-mode, or for all suitable buers with the command M-x global-cwarn-mode or by customizing the variable globalcwarn-mode. You must also enable Font Lock mode to make it work. M-x hide-ifdef-mode Hide-ifdef minor mode hides selected code within #if and #ifdef preprocessor blocks. If you change the variable hide-ifdef-shadow to t, Hide-ifdef minor mode shadows preprocessor blocks by displaying

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them with a less prominent face, instead of hiding them entirely. See the documentation string of hide-ifdef-mode for more information. M-x ff-find-related-file Find a le related in a special way to the le visited by the current buer. Typically this will be the header le corresponding to a C/C++ source le, or vice versa. The variable ff-related-file-alist species how to compute related le names.

23.13 Asm Mode


Asm mode is a major mode for editing les of assembler code. It denes these commands: TAB C-j : ; tab-to-tab-stop. Insert a newline and then indent using tab-to-tab-stop. Insert a colon and then remove the indentation from before the label preceding colon. Then do tab-to-tab-stop. Insert or align a comment.

The variable asm-comment-char species which character starts comments in assembler syntax.

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24 Compiling and Testing Programs


The previous chapter discusses the Emacs commands that are useful for making changes in programs. This chapter deals with commands that assist in the process of compiling and testing programs.

24.1 Running Compilations under Emacs


Emacs can run compilers for languages such as C and Fortran, feeding the compilation log into an Emacs buer. It can also parse the error messages and show you where the errors occurred. M-x compile Run a compiler asynchronously under Emacs, with error messages going to the *compilation* buer. M-x recompile Invoke a compiler with the same command as in the last invocation of M-x compile. M-x kill-compilation Kill the running compilation subprocess. To run make or another compilation command, type M-x compile. This reads a shell command line using the minibuer, and then executes the command by running a shell as a subprocess (or inferior process ) of Emacs. The output is inserted in a buer named *compilation*. The current buers default directory is used as the working directory for the execution of the command; normally, therefore, compilation takes place in this directory. The default compilation command is make -k, which is usually correct for programs compiled using the make utility (the -k ag tells make to continue compiling as much as possible after an error). See Section Make in GNU Make Manual . If you have done M-x compile before, the command that you specied is automatically stored in the variable compile-command; this is used as the default the next time you type M-x compile. A le can also specify a le-local value for compile-command (see Section 33.2.4 [File Variables], page 447). Starting a compilation displays the *compilation* buer in another window but does not select it. While the compilation is running, the word run is shown in the major mode indicator for the *compilation* buer, and the word Compiling appears in all mode lines. You do not have to keep the *compilation* buer visible while compilation is running; it continues in any case. When the compilation ends, for whatever reason, the mode line of the *compilation* buer changes to say exit (followed by the exit code: [0] for a normal exit), or signal (if a signal terminated the process). If you want to watch the compilation transcript as it appears, switch to the *compilation* buer and move point to the end of the buer. When point is at the end, new compilation output is inserted above point, which remains at the end. Otherwise, point remains xed while compilation output is added at the end of the buer.

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If you change the variable compilation-scroll-output to a non-nil value, the *compilation* buer scrolls automatically to follow the output. If the value is first-error, scrolling stops when the rst error appears, leaving point at that error. For any other non-nil value, scrolling continues until there is no more output. To rerun the last compilation with the same command, type M-x recompile. This reuses the compilation command from the last invocation of M-x compile. It also reuses the *compilation* buer and starts the compilation in its default directory, which is the directory in which the previous compilation was started. Starting a new compilation also kills any compilation already running in *compilation*, as the buer can only handle one compilation at any time. However, M-x compile asks for conrmation before actually killing a compilation that is running. You can also kill the compilation process with M-x kill-compilation. To run two compilations at once, start the rst one, then rename the *compilation* buer (perhaps using rename-uniquely; see Section 16.3 [Misc Buer], page 152), then switch buers and start the other compilation. This will create a new *compilation* buer. You can control the environment passed to the compilation command with the variable compilation-environment. Its value is a list of environment variable settings; each element should be a string of the form "envvarname =value ". These environment variable settings override the usual ones.

24.2 Compilation Mode


The *compilation* buer uses a major mode called Compilation mode. Compilation mode turns each error message in the buer into a hyperlink; you can move point to it and type RET, or click on it with the mouse (see Section 18.3 [Mouse References], page 167), to visit the locus of the error message in a separate window. The locus is the specic position in a le where that error occurred. If you change the variable compilation-auto-jump-to-first-error to a nonnil value, Emacs automatically visits the locus of the rst error message that appears in the *compilation* buer. Compilation mode provides the following additional commands. These commands can also be used in *grep* buers, where the hyperlinks are search matches rather than error messages (see Section 24.4 [Grep Searching], page 275). M-g M-n M-g n C-x M-g M-p M-g p M-n M-p

Visit the locus of the next error message or match (next-error). Visit the locus of the previous error message or match (previouserror). Move point to the next error message or match, without visiting its locus (compilation-next-error). Move point to the previous error message or match, without visiting its locus (compilation-previous-error).

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Move point to the next error message or match occurring in a dierent le (compilation-next-file). Move point to the previous error message or match occurring in a dierent le (compilation-previous-file). Toggle Next Error Follow minor mode, which makes cursor motion in the compilation buer produce automatic source display.

To visit errors sequentially, type C-x (next-error), or equivalently M-g M-n or M-g n. This command can be invoked from any buer, not just a Compilation mode buer. The rst time you invoke it after a compilation, it visits the locus of the rst error message. Each subsequent C-x visits the next error, in a similar fashion. If you visit a specic error with RET or a mouse click in the *compilation* buer, subsequent C-x commands advance from there. When C-x nds no more error messages to visit, it signals an error. C-u C-x starts again from the beginning of the compilation buer, and visits the rst locus. M-g M-p or M-g p (previous-error) iterates through errors in the opposite direction. The next-error and previous-error commands dont just act on the errors or matches listed in *compilation* and *grep* buers; they also know how to iterate through error or match lists produced by other commands, such as M-x occur (see Section 12.10 [Other Repeating Search], page 107). If you are already in a buer containing error messages or matches, those are the ones that are iterated through; otherwise, Emacs looks for a buer containing error messages or matches amongst the windows of the selected frame, then for one that next-error or previouserror previously iterated through, and nally amongst all other buers. If the buer chosen for iterating through is not currently displayed in a window, it will be displayed. By default, the next-error and previous-error commands skip less important messages. The variable compilation-skip-threshold controls this. The default value, 1, means to skip anything less important than a warning. A value of 2 means to skip anything less important than an error, while 0 means not to skip any messages. When Emacs visits the locus of an error message, it momentarily highlights the relevant source line. The duration of this highlight is determined by the variable next-error-highlight. If the *compilation* buer is shown in a window with a left fringe (see Section 11.14 [Fringes], page 83), the locus-visiting commands put an arrow in the fringe, pointing to the current error message. If the window has no left fringe, such as on a text terminal, these commands scroll the window so that the current message is at the top of the window. If you change the variable compilationcontext-lines to an integer value n, these commands scroll the window so that the current error message is n lines from the top, whether or not there is a fringe; the default value, nil, gives the behavior described above. To parse messages from the compiler, Compilation mode uses the variable compilation-error-regexp-alist which lists various error message formats and

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tells Emacs how to extract the locus from each. A similar variable, grep-regexpalist, tells Emacs how to parse output from a grep command (see Section 24.4 [Grep Searching], page 275). Compilation mode also denes the keys SPC and DEL to scroll by screenfuls; M-n (compilation-next-error) and M-p (compilation-previous-error) to move to the next or previous error message; and M-{ (compilation-next-file) and M-} (compilation-previous-file) to move to the next or previous error message for a dierent source le. You can type C-c C-f to toggle Next Error Follow mode. In this minor mode, ordinary cursor motion in the compilation buer automatically updates the source buer, i.e. moving the cursor over an error message causes the locus of that error to be displayed. The features of Compilation mode are also available in a minor mode called Compilation Minor mode. This lets you parse error messages in any buer, not just a normal compilation output buer. Type M-x compilation-minor-mode to enable the minor mode. For instance, in an Rlogin buer (see Section 31.3.10 [Remote Host], page 411), Compilation minor mode automatically accesses remote source les by FTP (see Section 15.1 [File Names], page 124).

24.3 Subshells for Compilation


The M-x compile command uses a shell to run the compilation command, but species the option for a noninteractive shell. This means, in particular, that the shell should start with no prompt. If you nd your usual shell prompt making an unsightly appearance in the *compilation* buer, it means you have made a mistake in your shells init le by setting the prompt unconditionally. (This init le may be named .bashrc, .profile, .cshrc, .shrc, etc., depending on what shell you use.) The shell init le should set the prompt only if there already is a prompt. Heres how to do it in bash: if [ "${PS1+set}" = set ] then PS1=... fi And heres how to do it in csh: if ($?prompt) set prompt = ... Emacs does not expect a compiler process to launch asynchronous subprocesses; if it does, and they keep running after the main compiler process has terminated, Emacs may kill them or their output may not arrive in Emacs. To avoid this problem, make the main compilation process wait for its subprocesses to nish. In a shell script, you can do this using $! and wait, like this: (sleep 10; echo 2nd)& pid=$! # Record pid of subprocess echo first message wait $pid # Wait for subprocess If the background process does not output to the compilation buer, so you only need to prevent it from being killed when the main compilation process terminates, this is sucient:

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24.4 Searching with Grep under Emacs


Just as you can run a compiler from Emacs and then visit the lines with compilation errors, you can also run grep and then visit the lines on which matches were found. This works by treating the matches reported by grep as if they were errors. The output buer uses Grep mode, which is a variant of Compilation mode (see Section 24.2 [Compilation Mode], page 272). M-x grep M-x lgrep Run grep asynchronously under Emacs, listing matching lines in the buer named *grep*.

M-x grep-find M-x find-grep M-x rgrep Run grep via find, and collect output in the *grep* buer. M-x zrgrep Run zgrep and collect output in the *grep* buer. M-x kill-grep Kill the running grep subprocess. To run grep, type M-x grep, then enter a command line that species how to run grep. Use the same arguments you would give grep when running it normally: a grep-style regexp (usually in single-quotes to quote the shells special characters) followed by le names, which may use wildcards. If you specify a prex argument for M-x grep, it nds the tag (see Section 25.3 [Tags], page 311) in the buer around point, and puts that into the default grep command. Your command need not simply run grep; you can use any shell command that produces output in the same format. For instance, you can chain grep commands, like this: grep -nH -e foo *.el | grep bar | grep toto The output from grep goes in the *grep* buer. You can nd the corresponding lines in the original les using C-x , RET, and so forth, just like compilation errors. Some grep programs accept a --color option to output special markers around matches for the purpose of highlighting. You can make use of this feature by setting grep-highlight-matches to t. When displaying a match in the source buer, the exact match will be highlighted, instead of the entire source line. The command M-x grep-find (also available as M-x find-grep) is similar to M-x grep, but it supplies a dierent initial default for the commandone that runs both find and grep, so as to search every le in a directory tree. See also the find-grep-dired command, in Section 27.15 [Dired and Find], page 342. The commands M-x lgrep (local grep) and M-x rgrep (recursive grep) are more user-friendly versions of grep and grep-find, which prompt separately for the regular expression to match, the les to search, and the base directory for the search. Case sensitivity of the search is controlled by the current value of case-

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fold-search. The command M-x zrgrep is similar to M-x rgrep, but it calls zgrep instead of grep to search the contents of gzipped les. These commands build the shell commands based on the variables greptemplate (for lgrep) and grep-find-template (for rgrep). The les to search can use aliases dened in the variable grep-files-aliases. Directories listed in the variable grep-find-ignored-directories are automatically skipped by M-x rgrep. The default value includes the data directories used by various version control systems.

24.5 Finding Syntax Errors On The Fly


Flymake mode is a minor mode that performs on-the-y syntax checking for many programming and markup languages, including C, C++, Perl, HTML, and TEX/LaTEX. It is somewhat analogous to Flyspell mode, which performs spell checking for ordinary human languages in a similar fashion (see Section 13.4 [Spelling], page 112). As you edit a le, Flymake mode runs an appropriate syntax checking tool in the background, using a temporary copy of the buer. It then parses the error and warning messages, and highlights the erroneous lines in the buer. The syntax checking tool used depends on the language; for example, for C/C++ les this is usually the C compiler. Flymake can also use build tools such as make for checking complicated projects. To enable Flymake mode, type M-x flymake-mode. You can jump to the errors that it nds by using M-x flymake-goto-next-error and M-x flymake-goto-prev-error. To display any error messages associated with the current line, type M-x flymake-display-err-menu-for-current-line. For more details about using Flymake, see the Flymake Info manual, which is distributed with Emacs.

24.6 Running Debuggers Under Emacs


The GUD (Grand Unied Debugger) library provides an Emacs interface to a wide variety of symbolic debuggers. It can run the GNU Debugger (GDB), as well as DBX, SDB, XDB, Perls debugging mode, the Python debugger PDB, and the Java Debugger JDB. Emacs provides a special interface to GDB, which uses extra Emacs windows to display the state of the debugged program. See Section 24.6.5 [GDB Graphical Interface], page 281. Emacs also has a built-in debugger for Emacs Lisp programs. See Section The Lisp Debugger in the Emacs Lisp Reference Manual . 24.6.1 Starting GUD There are several commands for starting a debugger subprocess, each corresponding to a particular debugger program.

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Run GDB as a subprocess, and interact with it via an IDE-like Emacs interface. See Section 24.6.5 [GDB Graphical Interface], page 281, for more information about this command. Run GDB, using a GUD interaction buer for input and output to the GDB subprocess (see Section 24.6.2 [Debugger Operation], page 277). If such a buer already exists, switch to it; otherwise, create the buer and switch to it. The other commands in this list do the same, for other debugger programs.

M-x gud-gdb

M-x perldb Run the Perl interpreter in debug mode. M-x jdb M-x pdb M-x dbx M-x xdb M-x sdb Run the Java debugger. Run the Python debugger. Run the DBX debugger. Run the XDB debugger. Run the SDB debugger.

Each of these commands reads a command line to invoke the debugger, using the minibuer. The minibuers initial contents contain the standard executable name and options for the debugger, and sometimes also a guess for the name of the executable le you want to debug. Shell wildcards and variables are not allowed in this command line. Emacs assumes that the rst command argument which does not start with a - is the executable le name. Tramp provides a facility for remote debugging, whereby both the debugger and the program being debugged are on the same remote host. See Section Running a debugger on a remote host in The Tramp Manual , for details. This is separate from GDBs remote debugging feature, where the program and the debugger run on dierent machines (see Section Debugging Remote Programs in The GNU debugger ). 24.6.2 Debugger Operation The GUD interaction buer is an Emacs buer which is used to send text commands to a debugger subprocess, and record its output. This is the basic interface for interacting with a debugger, used by M-x gud-gdb and other commands listed in the preceding section. The M-x gdb command extends this interface with additional specialized buers for controlling breakpoints, stack frames, and other aspects of the debugger state (see Section 24.6.5 [GDB Graphical Interface], page 281). The GUD interaction buer uses a variant of Shell mode, so the Emacs commands dened by Shell mode are available (see Section 31.3.3 [Shell Mode], page 403). Completion is available for most debugger commands (see Section 5.3 [Completion], page 29), and you can use the usual Shell mode history commands to repeat them. See the next section for special commands that can be used in the GUD interaction buer.

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As you debug a program, Emacs displays the relevant source les by visiting them in Emacs buers, with an arrow in the left fringe indicating the current execution line. (On a text terminal, the arrow appears as =>, overlaid on the rst two text columns.) Moving point in such a buer does not move the arrow. You are free to edit these source les, but note that inserting or deleting lines will throw o the arrows positioning, as Emacs has no way to gure out which edited source line corresponds to the line reported by the debugger subprocess. To update this information, you typically have to recompile and restart the program. GUD Tooltip mode is a global minor mode that adds tooltip support to GUD. To toggle this mode, type M-x gud-tooltip-mode. It is disabled by default. If enabled, you can move the mouse cursor over a variable to show its value in a tooltip (see Section 18.17 [Tooltips], page 178); this takes eect in the GUD interaction buer, and in all source buers with major modes listed in the variable gud-tooltipmodes. If the variable gud-tooltip-echo-area is non-nil, values are shown in the echo area instead of a tooltip. When using GUD Tooltip mode with M-x gud-gdb, you should note that displaying an expressions value in GDB can sometimes expand a macro, potentially causing side eects in the debugged program. If you use the M-x gdb interface, this problem does not occur, as there is special code to avoid side-eects; furthermore, you can display macro denitions associated with an identier when the program is not executing. 24.6.3 Commands of GUD GUD provides commands for setting and clearing breakpoints, selecting stack frames, and stepping through the program. C-x SPC Set a breakpoint on the source line that point is on.

C-x SPC (gud-break), when called in a source buer, sets a debugger breakpoint on the current source line. This command is available only after starting GUD. If you call it in a buer that is not associated with any debugger subprocess, it signals a error. The following commands are available both in the GUD interaction buer and globally, but with dierent key bindings. The keys starting with C-c are available only in the GUD interaction buer, while those starting with C-x C-a are available globally. Some of these commands are also available via the tool bar; some are not supported by certain debuggers. C-c C-l C-x C-a C-l Display, in another window, the last source line referred to in the GUD interaction buer (gud-refresh). C-c C-s C-x C-a C-s Execute the next single line of code (gud-step). If the line contains a function call, execution stops after entering the called function.

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Execute the next single line of code, stepping across function calls without stopping inside the functions (gud-next). C-c C-i C-x C-a C-i Execute a single machine instruction (gud-stepi). C-c C-p C-x C-a C-p Evaluate the expression at point (gud-print). If Emacs does not print the exact expression that you want, mark it as a region rst. C-c C-r C-x C-a C-r Continue execution without specifying any stopping point. The program will run until it hits a breakpoint, terminates, or gets a signal that the debugger is checking for (gud-cont). C-c C-d C-x C-a C-d Delete the breakpoint(s) on the current source line, if any (gudremove). If you use this command in the GUD interaction buer, it applies to the line where the program last stopped. C-c C-t C-x C-a C-t Set a temporary breakpoint on the current source line, if any (gudtbreak). If you use this command in the GUD interaction buer, it applies to the line where the program last stopped. C-c < C-x C-a < C-c > C-x C-a > C-c C-u C-x C-a C-u Continue execution to the current line (gud-until). The program will run until it hits a breakpoint, terminates, gets a signal that the debugger is checking for, or reaches the line on which the cursor currently sits. C-c C-f C-x C-a C-f Run the program until the selected stack frame returns or stops for some other reason (gud-finish). Select the next enclosing stack frame (gud-up). This is equivalent to the GDB command up. Select the next inner stack frame (gud-down). This is equivalent to the GDB command down.

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Only useful in a source buer, gud-jump transfers the programs execution point to the current line. In other words, the next line that the program executes will be the one where you gave the command. If the new execution line is in a dierent function from the previously one, GDB prompts for conrmation since the results may be bizarre. See the GDB manual entry regarding jump for details. TAB With GDB, complete a symbol name (gud-gdb-complete-command). This key is available only in the GUD interaction buer.

These commands interpret a numeric argument as a repeat count, when that makes sense. Because TAB serves as a completion command, you cant use it to enter a tab as input to the program you are debugging with GDB. Instead, type C-q TAB to enter a tab. 24.6.4 GUD Customization On startup, GUD runs one of the following hooks: gdb-mode-hook, if you are using GDB; dbx-mode-hook, if you are using DBX; sdb-mode-hook, if you are using SDB; xdb-mode-hook, if you are using XDB; perldb-mode-hook, for Perl debugging mode; pdb-mode-hook, for PDB; jdb-mode-hook, for JDB. See Section 33.2.2 [Hooks], page 445. The gud-def Lisp macro (see Section Dening Macros in the Emacs Lisp Reference Manual ) provides a convenient way to dene an Emacs command that sends a particular command string to the debugger, and set up a key binding for in the GUD interaction buer: (gud-def function cmdstring binding docstring ) This denes a command named function which sends cmdstring to the debugger process, and gives it the documentation string docstring. You can then use the command function in any buer. If binding is non-nil, gud-def also binds the command to C-c binding in the GUD buers mode and to C-x C-a binding generally. The command string cmdstring may contain certain %-sequences that stand for data to be lled in at the time function is called: %f The name of the current source le. If the current buer is the GUD buer, then the current source le is the le that the program stopped in. The number of the current source line. If the current buer is the GUD buer, then the current source line is the line that the program stopped in. In transient-mark-mode the text in the region, if it is active. Otherwise the text of the C lvalue or function-call expression at or adjacent to point.

%l

%e

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The numeric argument of the called function, as a decimal number. If the command is used without a numeric argument, %p stands for the empty string. If you dont use %p in the command string, the command you dene ignores any numeric argument.

%d %c

The name of the directory of the current source le. Fully qualied class name derived from the expression surrounding point (jdb only).

24.6.5 GDB Graphical Interface The command M-x gdb starts GDB in an IDE-like interface, with specialized buers for controlling breakpoints, stack frames, and other aspects of the debugger state. It also provides additional ways to control the debugging session with the mouse, such as clicking in the fringe of a source buer to set a breakpoint there. To run GDB using just the GUD interaction buer interface, without these additional features, use M-x gud-gdb (see Section 24.6.1 [Starting GUD], page 276). You must use this if you want to debug multiple programs within one Emacs session, as that is currently unsupported by M-x gdb. Internally, M-x gdb informs GDB that its screen size is unlimited; for correct operation, you must not change GDBs screen height and width values during the debugging session. 24.6.5.1 GDB User Interface Layout If the variable gdb-many-windows is nil (the default), M-x gdb normally displays only the GUD interaction buer. However, if the variable gdb-show-main is also non-nil, it starts with two windows: one displaying the GUD interaction buer, and the other showing the source for the main function of the program you are debugging. If gdb-many-windows is non-nil, then M-x gdb displays the following frame layout:
+--------------------------------+--------------------------------+ | GUD interaction buffer | Locals/Registers buffer | |--------------------------------+--------------------------------+ | Primary Source buffer | I/O buffer for debugged pgm | |--------------------------------+--------------------------------+ | Stack buffer | Breakpoints/Threads buffer | +--------------------------------+--------------------------------+

However, if gdb-use-separate-io-buffer is nil, the I/O buer does not appear and the primary source buer occupies the full width of the frame. If you ever change the window layout, you can restore the many windows layout by typing M-x gdb-restore-windows. To toggle between the many windows layout and a simple layout with just the GUD interaction buer and a source le, type M-x gdb-many-windows.

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You may also specify additional GDB-related buers to display, either in the same frame or a dierent one. Select the buers you want by typing M-x gdb-display-buffertype -buffer or M-x gdb-frame-buffertype -buffer, where buertype is the relevant buer type, such as breakpoints. You can do the same with the menu bar, with the GDB-Windows and GDB-Frames sub-menus of the GUD menu. When you nish debugging, kill the GUD interaction buer with C-x k, which will also kill all the buers associated with the session. However you need not do this if, after editing and re-compiling your source code within Emacs, you wish to continue debugging. When you restart execution, GDB automatically nds the new executable. Keeping the GUD interaction buer has the advantage of keeping the shell history as well as GDBs breakpoints. You do need to check that the breakpoints in recently edited source les are still in the right places. 24.6.5.2 Source Buers Mouse-1 (in fringe) Set or clear a breakpoint on that line. C-Mouse-1 (in fringe) Enable or disable a breakpoint on that line. Mouse-3 (in fringe) Continue execution to that line. C-Mouse-3 (in fringe) Jump to that line. On a graphical display, you can click Mouse-1 in the fringe of a source buer, to set a breakpoint on that line (see Section 11.14 [Fringes], page 83). A red dot appears in the fringe, where you clicked. If a breakpoint already exists there, the click removes it. A C-Mouse-1 click enables or disables an existing breakpoint; a breakpoint that is disabled, but not unset, is indicated by a gray dot. On a text terminal, or when fringes are disabled, enabled breakpoints are indicated with a B character in the left margin of the window. Disabled breakpoints are indicated with b. (The margin is only displayed if a breakpoint is present.) A solid arrow in the left fringe of a source buer indicates the line of the innermost frame where the debugged program has stopped. A hollow arrow indicates the current execution line of a higher-level frame. If you drag the arrow in the fringe with Mouse-1, that causes execution to advance to the line where you release the button. Alternatively, you can click Mouse-3 in the fringe to advance to that line. You can click C-Mouse-3 in the fringe to jump to that line without executing the intermediate lines. This command allows you to go backwards, which can be useful for running through code that has already executed, in order to examine its execution in more detail. 24.6.5.3 Breakpoints Buer The GDB Breakpoints buer shows the breakpoints, watchpoints and catchpoints in the debugger session. See Section Breakpoints in The GNU debugger . It

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provides the following commands, which mostly apply to the current breakpoint (the breakpoint which point is on): SPC Enable/disable current breakpoint (gdb-toggle-breakpoint). On a graphical display, this changes the color of the dot in the fringe of the source buer at that line. The dot is red when the breakpoint is enabled, and gray when it is disabled. Delete the current breakpoint (gdb-delete-breakpoint). Visit the source line for the current breakpoint (gdb-gotobreakpoint). Visit the source line for the breakpoint you click on.

D RET Mouse-2

When gdb-many-windows is non-nil, the GDB Breakpoints buer shares its window with the GDB Threads buer. To switch from one to the other click with Mouse-1 on the relevant button in the header line. If gdb-show-threads-bydefault is non-nil, the GDB Threads buer is the one shown by default. 24.6.5.4 Threads Buer The GDB Threads buer displays a summary of the threads in the debugged program. See Section Debugging programs with multiple threads in The GNU debugger . To select a thread, move point there and type RET (gdb-select-thread), or click on it with Mouse-2. This also displays the associated source buer, and updates the contents of the other GDB buers. You can customize variables under gdb-buffers group to select elds included in GDB Threads buer. gdb-thread-buffer-verbose-names Show long thread names like Thread 0x4e2ab70 (LWP 1983). gdb-thread-buffer-arguments Show arguments of thread top frames. gdb-thread-buffer-locations Show le information or library names. gdb-thread-buffer-addresses Show addresses for thread frames in threads buer. To view information for several threads simultaneously, use the following commands from the GDB Threads buer. d f l Display disassembly buer for the thread (gdb-display-disassembly-for-thread). at current line

Display the GDB Stack buer for the thread at current line (gdbdisplay-stack-for-thread). Display the GDB Locals buer for the thread at current line (gdbdisplay-locals-for-thread).

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Display the GDB Registers buer for the thread at current line (gdbdisplay-registers-for-thread).

Their upper-case counterparts, D, F ,L and R, display the corresponding buer in a new frame. When you create a buer showing information about some specic thread, it becomes bound to that thread and keeps showing actual information while you debug your program. The mode indicator for each GDB buer shows the number of thread it is showing information about. The thread number is also included in the buer name of bound buers. Further commands are available in the GDB Threads buer which depend on the mode of GDB that is used for controlling execution of your program. See Section 24.6.5.8 [Multithreaded Debugging], page 286. 24.6.5.5 Stack Buer The GDB Stack buer displays a call stack, with one line for each of the nested subroutine calls (stack frames ) in the debugger session. See Section Backtraces in The GNU debugger . On graphical displays, the selected stack frame is indicated by an arrow in the fringe. On text terminals, or when fringes are disabled, the selected stack frame is displayed in reverse contrast. To select a stack frame, move point in its line and type RET (gdb-frames-select), or click Mouse-2 on it. Doing so also updates the Locals buer (described in the next section). 24.6.5.6 Other GDB Buers Locals Buer This buer displays the values of local variables of the current frame for simple data types (see Section Information on a frame in The GNU debugger ). Press RET or click Mouse-2 on the value if you want to edit it. Arrays and structures display their type only. With GDB 6.4 or later, you can examine the value of the local variable at point by typing RET, or with a Mouse-2 click. With earlier versions of GDB, use RET or Mouse-2 on the type description ([struct/union] or [array]). See Section 24.6.5.7 [Watch Expressions], page 285. Registers Buer This buer displays the values held by the registers (see Section Registers in The GNU debugger ). Press RET or click Mouse-2 on a register if you want to edit its value. With GDB 6.4 or later, recently changed register values display with font-lock-warning-face. Assembler Buer The assembler buer displays the current frame as machine code. An arrow points to the current instruction, and you can set and remove breakpoints as in a source buer. Breakpoint icons also appear in the fringe or margin.

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Memory Buer The memory buer lets you examine sections of program memory (see Section Examining memory in The GNU debugger ). Click Mouse-1 on the appropriate part of the header line to change the starting address or number of data items that the buer displays. Alternatively, use S or N respectively. Click Mouse-3 on the header line to select the display format or unit size for these data items. When gdb-many-windows is non-nil, the locals buer shares its window with the registers buer, just like